Wednesday, February 13, 2019

My Valentine

By Lilibeth Sabado

Many countries around the world today celebrate Valentine’s Day.  I suppose you will agree with me when I say that this day is loaded  with commercialism. Every place seems to be packed with lovers; this day is filled with special meals, dinner for two, special shows and concerts, roses and chocolates, jewelries, stuffed toys, heart shaped- desserts, cards, balloons, gifts in various kinds including pets like kittens or puppies as romantic gifts!  Traffic congestion everywhere, fully booked restaurants and so on.   I must admit that all these Valentine commotions used to thrill me a lot. When I was younger, Valentine’s Day has to be special. Within 24 hours, it seems so magical, and often times it is more impulsive and is difficult to let go.

Beth's parents
However, as I grow older, I come to realize that the things I mentioned earlier are just superficial expressions. The way I see things is far more different now. The material things and gestures that used to excite me a lot when I was younger has been replaced by something more focused, something more palpable, tangible and deep.  As I journey the second half of my life, I see every day as Valentine’s Day. I see each day as magical.  I say so because the fact that I wake up each day is indeed a gift of love. The day of love no longer exist just one day in a year, but every day I wake up is an opportunity to show love to everyone around me. This love is no longer an exclusive one but an inclusive affection and to everyone that I come to encounter. Day after day is Valentine’s Day. Someone said that, the world is never short of love, for as long as we continue to give it freely and unconditionally. If we continue to give love, then what a lovely world we will have.

Eleven years ago, few days before February 14, my siblings and I were planning and preparing for our most special but unconventional Valentine celebration, there were flowers and food involved, there were friends and relatives who showed up and we felt their love.  We wanted the day to be extra special because on that day, we were celebrating a gift of life. On this day we sent off the man who taught us how to love. On Valentine’s Day, we sent Dad to his final resting place.  On this day we buried our Valentine, my mom’s Valentine, my valentine, the man I love best on earth. His departure on earth was sad and inevitable. Whenever I think of Dad, however, I am comforted in the thought that he is not totally gone. I do not see him physically but I continue to give back love which he taught me how. I think of love, I give love and I know he is there and I feel him in my heart. I continue to miss him every single day but I look forward to the day where I will meet him again, and I believe for sure what a day of rejoicing it will be. Love never dies. Love bears all things. Love is free.  Love is the most powerful force on earth. 

 Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

The Sabado Family

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