It's Valentine's Day week and every year as the stores overflow with heart-shaped boxes of candy and the jewelers try to convince us to show our love with their trinkets, I find myself smiling at the ridiculous twists and turns this holiday has had in my life.
Today, I want to share a perennial favorite story of a Valentine's Day far in the past.
It's the tale of a silly and broken-hearted (and probably overly and unnecessarily dramatic) young girl and some snooping parents.
I've told it before and I'll surely tell it again because it always makes me laugh. And I hope it makes you laugh too.
This year, I'm also in the middle of the month of writing a Whole Lotta Letters, and as I was writing to the very same dear old friend in this story, I couldn't help remembering how letters used to be a normal part of our communication and how much trouble they got us in. It also made me glad that we came of age of more reason before the internet was a thing.
For now, here's the story of a sad misunderstanding about VDs.
Once upon a time there was a naive little girl who fell for a boy. Looking back, the girl has no idea what on earth she saw in this particular boy~ perhaps it was his fast car, or his awesome rock band t-shirts. Maybe she just thought he was cute, and her silly young heart wanted it to be something more than it was.
The draw to this boy certainly wasn't based on shared conversation or charm or friendship. Whatever it was, it was nothing of substance, but for some reason, she wanted it to be.
Well, the boy broke her heart, and he did it the week before Christmas. After she wailed miserably about the ordeal to her BFF, they eventually laughed that the boy was probably just wanting to get out of buying her a present.
Sure enough, a few days after the holiday, he called her, full of weak attempts at romantic compliments. In hindsight, it was probably not very convincing really, but the silly girl thought she should be looking for love, and so she fell for it. By New Years Eve, he had done some stupid thing, she isn't even sure what anymore, but she spent that night too gabbing with her BFF about the pain of love.
By Valentines Day, she knew the whole thing was a sham, but being young and unsure of herself, she still wanted desperately to feel loved. The hearts and chocolates and cards in every store just reminded her that she wasn't, or at least she didn't think so at the time.
And so, she wrote her BFF a note, because that's what school girls did in the days before texting. She wrote on paper of how glad she was that VD was over, how painful the whole VD had been, and how she would be glad to skip ever experiencing another VD for the rest of her life.
Well, BFFs mom found the note, and read it. Being a paranoid mom of a teen girl, she didn't know that VD was in this case an abbreviation for Valentine's Day. Her concerned maternal mind thought VD stood for.... Venereal Disease. (...insert horrified mom shrieking here...)
The Poor Mother was appalled, not just because she thought her daughter's BFF was running around getting VDs, but because she had imagined this BFF to be such a good girl, (which she actually was) but this VD revelation was squelching her perceptions.
Raised blood pressure a good deal of yelling and a few parental tears followed before an understanding was reached.
(Note to parents of teens: Sometimes you could save yourself from quite a bit of unnecessary stress and worry by simply not snooping.)
In any case, the 2 BFFs laughed and laughed and laughed about the VD incident for years. I don't know that the mother ever found it quite as amusing though.
Well, the girls grew up, first according to the calendar and in regards to the legal sense, but it took a lot longer to grow in any real sense. They both got married far too young, and eventually divorced as well, and they both took turns finding themselves leaning towards the cynical side of the fence in regards to love
Then, that girl who was so relieved to have VD over really did some growing.
She realized that a person needs to love themselves before they can love truly love someone else, and that happiness isn't found in unhappy relationships.
She learned that love isn't a fairy tale, and that she didn't need or want to be rescued or saved, because she had her own back. She became her own BFF and realized how much she loved learning about all that she still had to learn.
She knew from being a mother herself that no matter how pure and strong a love is, relationships still take work, commitment and dedication. Every Day.
She learned that real love is a choice that a person makes, and that a partnership requires both partners be willing and able to do whatever work it takes because they believe it will be worth it.
Eventually she stopped mocking the idea that love could really conquer anything because she realized that while feelings come and go just like mood swings, Real Love is not just an emotion~ it's a verb~ an action word.
And just like in parenting, she knew that the only actions a person is really responsible for are their own, and that doing their best to make those actions loving is the most important thing, and really the only thing, that they can do.
When she looked around, the girl realized she was now a Grown Ass Woman and was full of gratitude for the abundance of beautiful blessings surrounding her life, and she knew without a doubt that those blessings outweighed all the stupid pain in the arse stuff.
And when she finally opened her heart to the possibilities, even more wonderful things came her way.
Happy Valentines Day! I hope your day is filled with love!
If you liked this little story, PLEASE give a like over on Facebook! (It really helps me get found on the mysterious ways of the web)
And I'd love to hear your "VD" stories below! XOXO!
Writer, Artist, Empowered Living Advocate, Wanna-be Organic Gardening Foodie, Travel Loving Life Explorer, FunSchooling Facilitator / Former Goat-Herding HeadMistress for our Mostly Happy Homeschool, Semi-Crazy Chicken Lady and Mamacita Extraordinaire to a couple of Cage Free Kids.