When I was younger in my many years of singledom, I dreamed of the day when Valentines would actually mean something to me. I imagined all the loved up couples in the world cooing at each other over a chocolate fondue, surrounded by rose petals, scented candles and the dulcet tones Celine Dion (cut me some slack, it was a good few years ago). I used to get incredibly sad in the run up to V-day itself at the prospect of another year without a secret admirer to send me roses and poetry. On occasional years I would indeed get a card, clumsily scribbled with From guess who...
I really had to beg my parents to stop doing it. The shame of getting a card from them was even greater than the stigma of being unloved. Boohoo.
So when I finally did have a Valentine, in the shape of Mr P, there was much rejoicing although it wasn't actually reserved for the day itself. Each year, as Valentine's came round once more, we found ourselves awkwardly trying to negotiate the situation without much success. He thinks it's a load of commercial rubbish, I think it's not about the commercial side, it's about the gesture itself. So, not really being able to define verbally what I wanted on V-day, Mr P would take it as meaning I didn't really care and therefore put it on the back burner until the day itself would come round and I would inevitably get into a major strop about the lack of effort or enthusiasm on his part. Very romantic indeed.
This year, I had an epiphany. Or to be more precise, today I had an epiphany. I was making myself up for the day and having a little more time at my disposal I decided to work an understated look (the kind where you use loads of products and take loads of time to make it look like you haven't tried) and I dug out a lipstick (Laura Mercier in Courtisane) which I hadn't used in ages.
|I better make it last, I just found out it's been discontinued. Not cool.|
I put it on, and I realised why I'd bought it in the first place. It was such a gorgeous colour, a neutral pinky red shot through with gold shimmer, but at the same time quite understated and unassuming to look at in the tube. I guess because of this it had been relegated to the bottom of a handbag only to be re-discovered in a recent 'handbag autopsy'. It gave me such a lift to wear this beautiful and luxurious lipstick and for some inexplicable reason I suddenly felt very disposed to the Valentine's spirit. I don't want to go out anywhere special tomorrow, I don't want my husband to buy me presents, but I do want to feel like it's a special day and I know that it will be. I realised that tomorrow's romantic feeling was entirely in my hands, and the mundane act of slicking on a luxurious lipstick showed me how simple it was going to be. I want to put some effort into tomorrow, to dress a little sassy, to wear the cuter boots, to style my hair, to wear the prettiest lipstick I own, to bake some heart-shaped cookies (these ones) and maybe buy a beautiful little pot of violets. It won't really be an effort though. Tomorrow will be my Valentine's Day and if Mr P wants to partake in my celebration, he is more than welcome, there'll definitely be enough cookies to go round. He will appreciate my efforts and that's enough for me. As I said at the beginning Valentine's Day is a state of mind rather than a state of heart, so who could blame him for not feeling the V-day vibes. It'll be a funny sort of Valentine's day, but at least it will be all mine.
With love, Pandora xxxxx