I’ll be useful, I’ll be cavalier, I’ll be yours my dear and I’ll belong to you.

Oh Valentines Day.

I have always loved Valentines Day for a couple of reasons:

1. I freakin’ love candy. I know that I can buy candy any day of the year (and often, I do) but there’s just something about Valentines Day candy that I love. Conversation hearts are pretty delish.

2. I love making people things and giving gifts, I believe truly that is is better to give than to receive.

Of course, I always wanted a fairy tale Valentines Day growing up. I longed for a boy to buy me chocolates and flowers and all that stuff.

My high school did a fundraiser where you could buy valentines day carnations and send them to your valentine. I always got some from my friends, and a couple of years I got flowers from Mr. H, my band teacher. How romantic.

My junior year I did finally get the Valentines Day I was wishing for. My close friend L invited me over on Valentines Day but I was scheduled to go to my Dad’s house for the night.  L insisted I had to at least stop by “even if it’s just for five minutes.” My Dad agreed to swing by L’s house on the way home and I ran inside to see what the big deal was. I will say I was totally surprised when he lead me into the kitchen with his hands over my eyes only to reveal a giant stereotypical romantic spread. There was the traditional box of Russell Stovers, Roses, a plate full of chocolate covered strawberries with “Happy Valentines Day Sarah” written around the edge of the plate in modeling chocolate and lastly, a single conversation heart which he pressed into my hand. It was white, with pink writing and it read: “Be Mine.”

I looked down at the heart, and then up at him and he looked so nervous and I felt…nothing except this immense sense of obligation. I thanked him, and gave him a huge hug and a peck on the lips. I didn’t know what else to do or say. He helped me gather up all the stuff and walked me out. Talk about romance.

I really did care about L, a lot. Our  friendship had started when a mutual friend/teacher (the same one who sent me the damn flowers) had tried to convince me to date him saying that I would “straighten him out.” I was totally and completely not attracted to L. He had long, flaming, red hair and buck teeth. He was constantly getting kicked out of band class and smoked pot and cigarettes like it was his job. He drove an orange and purple Kawaskai Ninja and if there was anything that turned me off more it was an 80’s inspired Rice Rocket. Sooooo not my type. But, because I really liked Mr. H I agreed at the very least to tutor L in Spanish, which he was failing, for the second time. The more I got to know him, the more I liked him but it never went further than that. I cared deeply about him as a friend.

I carried that stupid candy heart around in my purse for three months after, thinking maybe somehow I could return the sentiment. It was what I wanted after all, a boyfriend. I hated rejecting him and one of his better attributes, his all encompassing determination, has made it so I have had to do it over and over again. We were just not a good fit and someday I know L is going to realize that too.

I had always thought L would be the only guy to attempt the grand Valentines Day with me.

A couple of days ago a box arrived to my house proving me wrong.

You know what’s better than the traditional romantic gestures?

A box full of everyday things that make you smile, sent to you from a guy who knows all the stupid crap that makes you happy like cherry chapstick and the smell of old books.

And I won’t lie, I’ve been insanely jealous lately (jealously, like worrying is a useless emotion! I can hear my father now!) of my close friends who seem to be all coupled up and flaunting their non long distance relationships in my face. You see I always thought my college relationship would be with a guy who lived across campus, not across time zones.

It turns out that everything I thought I wanted was wrong, and it never felt so right.

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