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Valentine’s Day Without a Sweetheart?

Many single people abhor the thought of Valentine’s Day especially if they don’t currently have a main squeeze to share festivities with.

Does it seem like everyone around you is holding hands, smooching, whispering sweet nothings, wearing shiny wedding rings, dancing and romancing, young and in love, infatuated, or in lust?

Even if a majority in the room are unattached, do you still primarily see only couples? Are you dreading a solitary existence? Do you believe you’re the last bachelor/bachelorette left in the neighborhood?

The solution is to focus on what you have, rather than what you don’t have. Turn around the lenses in your eyes and soul. Don a different attitude.

You don’t require jewelry or a bouquet to experience worthiness. There are numerous ways to rejoice with or without a mate.

Begin by doing something unique for yourself whether it’s a present you’ve been waiting to receive from Mr./Ms. Right, e.g. clothing, gems, a gourmet dinner; or an amorous action, e.g. a massage, facial, hike, stroll down the boulevard.

Surround yourself with gentle, compassionate thoughts, nurturing cohorts, and self kindness. Choose behavior that celebrates your significance and merit.

This holiday is about more than just entertaining a lover. It’s about expressing fondness and affection for those you care about, letting them know how important they are. 

On Tuesday, spread the love by spending the day in a bubble of light and glory, reveling in all your blessings. Unlock your chi, smile from your core, and venture outside to a world of bliss. You can find the peace and contentment you crave through community, nature, animals, the arts.

Transfer the inner love you acquire to those close to you, acknowledging how much you appreciate and value their support and camaraderie. Disperse a heart-to-heart hug, kiss, compliment, or tender glance to all you encounter.

Consider five individuals you admire and express face to face your reverence. If a one-on-one isn’t available, say it in a card, song, poem, email, phone or text message.

Instead of chocolates and roses, give the gift of undivided attention, active listening, a warm embrace, homemade collage, personalized photograph, keepsake to remember you by,  friendship bracelet, trip to the movies, walk to the park, or babysitting, cleaning services,  grocery shopping for someone in need.   

Recollect the words from endearing songs, e.g. What the world needs now is love sweet love it’s the only thing that there’s just too little of; All you need is love, love is all you need; The love you take is equal to the love you make; Love is something if you give it away, you end up having more. (lyrics by Hal David/Burt Bacharach; John Lennon; Paul McCartney; Malvina Reynolds respectively)

If you’re nonetheless having difficulty accessing the joy,

Forget about the days when it's been cloudy, but don't forget your hours in the sun...
Forget about the times you’ve been defeated, but don't forget the victories you've won...

Forget about mistakes you can't change now, but don't forget the lessons you learned...
Forget about misfortunes you've encountered, but don't forget the times your luck turned...

Forget about the days you've been lonely, but don't forget the friendly smiles you've seen...
Forget about plans that didn't seem to work out right, but don't forget to always have a dream
... (Amanda Bradley)

Speaking of dreams...they’re borne out of love, passion, and desire, which may emanate from a source other than via an intimate, sexual partner. Vital feelings of enthusiasm, zeal, devotion, and ardor can be kindled by an internal fervor, your environment, a special connection with a child, friend, relative, or pet.

Whatever inspires and awakens your essence, illuminating your finest qualities and the peak creativity you covet, is a conduit for aspirations.    

On Valentine’s Day, contemplate filling your bucket at a well overflowing with an abundance of assets. If your family, associates, acquaintances are barren vessels, opt to visit a retirement home, shelter, elderly or ill neighbor, delivering candy or flowers and brightening up the spirits of those who will thrive from your benevolence. 

Passing on pleasure and delight to another is a fail-safe way to instantly replace the emptiness you sense with a fresh purpose and meaning. You’ll be rewarded two fold with a pristine satisfaction.

If you want something you’ve never had, you have to do something you’ve never done. Hence, if you fancy tapping into your inner beauty, confidence, capabilities, and courage as well as discovering the same in others, practice the ‘Parable of the Rose,’ described below: 

A certain man planted a rose and watered it faithfully and before it blossomed, he examined it. He saw the bud that would soon blossom, but noticed thorns upon the stem and thought, "How can any beautiful flower come from a plant burdened with so many sharp thorns?"

Saddened by this thought, he neglected to water the rose, and before it was ready to bloom, it died.

So it is with countless people. Within every soul there is a rose. The Godlike qualities planted in us at birth grow amid the thorns of our faults. We often look at ourselves and see only the thorns, the defects. We despair, thinking that nothing constructive can possibly come from us. We neglect to water the good inside us, and eventually it dies. We never realize our potential.

Many do not see the rose within themselves; someone else must reveal it to them. One of the greatest gifts a person can possess is to be able to reach past the thorns and find the rose within others.

This is the characteristic of love - to look at another and know their true limitations, accepting that person into your life, while recognizing the nobility in their soul. Help them understand that they can overcome their shortcomings. If you show them the rose, they will conquer their thorns. Only then will they blossom endlessly. (Author Unknown)

On Tuesday, February 14th at 7pm, if you wish to get your paramour in the mood, wow your date, or inspire your BFF, bring him/her to a benefit presentation of Eve Ensler’s provocative, touching, and hilarious play, The Vagina Monologues at Open Fist Theatre, 6209 Santa Monica Blvd., one block east of Vine Street in Hollywood. Info at www.openfist.org.   

For $10 a ticket, you’re guaranteed 90 minutes of funny, heartbreaking, titillating theatre with plenty of time to make your dinner reservation. You’ll gain the added bonus of contributing to a commendable cause as proceeds are donated to V-Day, a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls; and Prototypes L.A., helping women rebuild their lives.

Directed by Amy Rowell, The Vagina Monologues stars Algerita Wynn (The Office), Barbara Schofield (Roundabout Theatre), Beth Robbins (All My Children), Jessica Noboa (Letters from the Big Man), Katy Tysckiewicz (New Dramatists Theatre), Laura Flanagan (Williamstown Theatre), Maia Madison (Hot in Cleveland), Maxie Solters (Chelsea Lately), and Nicola Hersh (Monk).

You’re certain to be moved, leaving the stimulating performance transformed, empowered to shout out for freedom from sexual oppression and repression.

Continue your Valentine’s Day commemoration on Saturday February 18th at the Oyster House with Love Songs by sultry jazz crooner, Studio City’s own Laura Pursell, accompanied by renowned guitarist Ron Anthony (Frank Sinatra, George Shearing) and superb bassist Harvey Newmark (Buddy Rich, Anita O'Day, Red Holloway).

Come solo or with your honey or possibility. Your outlook will be enhanced when you enter this affable ambience where you’ll be greeted with jovial, cordial arms by the welcoming staff and regulars.

It’s like listening to music in your living room. Laura, Ron, and Harvey combine their amazing talents for a perfect blend of soothing standards.

No cover charge. Music starts at 9:30p. Kitchen closes at 10p so arrive early for scrumptious dining and an assortment of reasonably priced dishes.

After your night on the town, return home to a crackling, cozy fire, snuggle up with hot chocolate, popcorn, and a sexy, sizzling Barry White album (always a great aphrodisiac if you’ve got your ‘happily ever after’ in tow).

Turn on your favorite romantic comedy from this list of the finest: Sleepless in Seattle, While You Were Sleeping, Groundhog’s Day, Love Actually, When Harry Met Sally, Pretty Woman, Annie Hall, Pretty Woman, Runaway Bride, The Proposal, Forrest Gump, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Dirty Dancing, Moulin Rouge, You’ve Got Mail.

Perhaps you’ll be the next at the altar, after a pronouncement of the three magic words (see last week’s column on Why It’s Scary to Say “I Love You”) that open doors and windows to a universe full of exciting adventures. If you don’t receive the big three, be assertive, take a leap of faith, and bequeath them to the man/woman you cherish.

Diamonds may last forever but these three precious words produce an indelible mark, ensuring a beloved is enthralled and captivated in perpetuity. Ponder making them part of your daily routine, comparable to brushing your teeth. What a fabulous concept if you yearn for a long lasting, eternal bond.

Author’s Note: On this first anniversary of I’d like to thank all the dedicated readers who have motivated me to maintain the column over the past year. Your positive feedback has provided me with the incentive and impetus to persevere.

You’re the driving force and reason why I’m beholden for the opportunity to arouse awareness, insight, and rejuvenation. I look forward to hearing how has helped you progress on your journey towards being the best you can be.    

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