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Today at the supermarket, I felt the first pang of jealousy and spite for this holiday. I’ve had no reason to feel this way before when I had not known the faces of love nor felt the need to recognize it. Around me, stores advertised shelves of red hearts and roses, to me as if colored by blood or red-lipped kisses. There were gift cards with the generic greetings and teddy bears that looked so cuddly, the tools of a capitalist trade that made me sick to my knees.
And yet I wanted it all. I wanted someone to give me flowers, I wanted the cheesy lines, the dreamy promises. I wanted cheap plastic hearts and scented letters and felt a loss and a longing for them I never knew I had. I felt hate the first time around and finally knew why women could be so cruel and so bitter. Right in front of me, sprawled on every empty surface, embodied in every molecule was a promise once made to every little girl and boy on this earth: that they would find love, they would find the one. How easily could some people take all of this for granted? After a week, they threw away the flowers. In a year, the letters would be forgotten, the boy gone and the love replaced. For once in my life I knew what it was like to love someone and to not be loved in return.
The fear crept from my stomach to my fingertips like wildfire and snuffed the passion that fueled the entities that grow inside me. I remember your face, so childlike and kind— then your back as you walked away from me. At home, I knew I wasn’t going to get flowers, i knew my bed was going to be cold. I knew you weren’t going to call or plan anything special. I knew what it was like to be lonely even if you said i was not alone. If you were under the presumption that since I was oh so smart and badass, liberated and nonchalant that I would not mind an absent holiday, you were wrong, my darling. You and me both. When you told me you were spending time at with your family up north tonight instead of Valentine’s day, I wondered — in my own delusions of the insecure— if that was fancy code and your way of explaining Your time with her, instead of a day of just you and me.