Presence; More Important Than Presents

By: Amanda Hopkins/”The Voice” Contributing Writer

Up until this year, Valentine’s Day meant nothing to me.

Being single, I had no desire to watch couples parade around flaunting their love for each other. I didn’t care to watch the sappy love stories on television, and I’d roll my eyes at the couples that thought they were “so in love,” as they spent their last few dollars on jewelry and novelty gifts.  Spending so much money on someone you were unlikely to be with forever? I just didn’t see the point. But, this year, Valentine’s Day has come to mean more to me, because I have someone special to share it with.

Valentine’s Day is less than two days away and I could not be more excited. Unlike most people, I did not spend hours in the mall searching for the perfect cologne, nor did I search every sale rack until I found the perfect Valentine’s Day outfit.   And while I would enjoy it, I am not expecting my boyfriend to reenact a movie scene by having me follow a path of red rose petals to the bed, or present me with a silver bracelet with our names engraved on it.

Instead of worrying about the flowers that would die in a few days, or the outfit that wouldn’t fit next year, I decided to concentrate my time thinking about something that would last much longer – the memories.  With that in mind, I planned a nice Valentine’s breakfast (full of heart-shaped goodies and pink juice), a romantic movie at home and making chocolate-covered strawberries together; all of which we will do with a camera in hand.

Because I am in a long-distance relationship and only get to see my boyfriend once a month, Valentine’s Day is more about spending time together and about making memories that we’ll have forever than it is about the candy and teddy bears.

Last year, I was in a completely different boat. I couldn’t wait to get home to receive the chocolate and stuffed animal from the most important man in my life at the time…my dad.  This year, another guy holds my heart, and I’m counting down the hours until I get to go home, run into his arms, and give him the biggest hug I’ve ever given.

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