Happy happy Valentines Day everyone! My wish for you is a lifetime, full of amazing love, starting today…and lasting your lifetime…
Grief has turned my life upside down and I am just beginning to re-emerge a bit…Today, for me, seems like a good holiday to really make an appearance back into my life…love, love, love…
There have been many a year that I just wanted this day to pass, so I wouldn’t be reminded that I was in a pretty loveless place in my life…and there have been years where Valentine’s Day was really something to celebrate in my life. Every year, for my whole life, Valentine’s Day was a big day to my Mon and she went all out…and I sure am missing her, on this day…
I know that of all the things I’ve decided to let go of, love is not one of them. Of all the things I’ve given up on, love is not one. In times where I have lost my way, lost my faith, lost my ability to try…love has always found its way back to me, and today is no different.
My Mom is with me right now and she assures me that this is my day…if I am to make a comeback into my life, it may as well be on this, a day of love…
Here is some history on Valentines Day, by Elizabeth Haines, that I thought you might enjoy…I definitely learned something.
A man named Valentinus was martyred on February 14 late in the third century A.D.—this much we know. But when it comes to details about the life of St. Valentine, legend often supersedes fact. As you celebrate this Valentine’s Day, find out the truth about the man for whom the day is named, as well as some other intriguing facts about history’s most romantic holiday.
- The St. Valentine who inspired the holiday may have been two different men.
Officially recognized by the Roman Catholic Church, St. Valentine is known to be a real person who died around A.D. 270. However, his true identity was questioned as early as A.D. 496 by Pope Gelasius I, who referred to the martyr and his acts as “being known only to God.” One account from the 1400s describes Valentine as a temple priest who was beheaded near Rome by the emperor Claudius II for helping Christian couples wed. A different account claims Valentine was the Bishop of Terni, also martyred by Claudius II on the outskirts of Rome. Because of the similarities of these accounts, it’s thought they may refer to the same person. Enough confusion surrounds the true identity of St. Valentine that the Catholic Church discontinued liturgical veneration of him in 1969, though his name remains on its list of officially recognized saints.
In all, there are about a dozen St. Valentines, plus a pope.
The saint we celebrate on Valentine’s Day is known officially as St. Valentine of Rome in order to differentiate him from the dozen or so other Valentines on the list. Because “Valentinus”—from the Latin word for worthy, strong or powerful—was a popular moniker between the second and eighth centuries A.D., several martyrs over the centuries have carried this name. The official Roman Catholic roster of saints shows about a dozen who were named Valentine or some variation thereof. The most recently beatified Valentine is St. Valentine Berrio-Ochoa, a Spaniard of the Dominican order who traveled to Vietnam, where he served as bishop until his beheading in 1861. Pope John Paul II canonized Berrio-Ochoa in 1988. There was even a Pope Valentine, though little is known about him except that he served a mere 40 days around A.D. 827.
Valentine is the patron saint of beekeepers and epilepsy, among many other things.
Saints are certainly expected to keep busy in the afterlife. Their holy duties include interceding in earthly affairs and entertaining petitions from living souls. In this respect, St. Valentine has wide-ranging spiritual responsibilities. People call on him to watch over the lives of lovers, of course, but also for interventions regarding beekeeping and epilepsy, as well as the plague, fainting and traveling. As you might expect, he’s also the patron saint of engaged couples and happy marriages.
You can find Valentine’s skull in Rome.
The flower-adorned skull of St. Valentine is on display in the Basilica of Santa Maria in Cosmedin, Rome. In the early 1800s, the excavation of a catacomb near Rome yielded skeletal remains and other relics now associated with St. Valentine. As is customary, these bits and pieces of the late saint’s body have subsequently been distributed to reliquaries around the world. You’ll find other bits of St. Valentine’s skeleton on display in the Czech Republic, Ireland, Scotland, England and France.
Chaucer may have invented Valentine’s Day.
The medieval English poet Geoffrey Chaucer often took liberties with history, placing his poetic characters into fictitious historical contexts that he represented as real. No record exists of romantic celebrations on Valentine’s Day prior to a poem Chaucer wrote around 1375. In his work “Parliament of Foules,” he links a tradition of courtly love with the celebration of St. Valentine’s feast day–an association that didn’t exist until after his poem received widespread attention. The poem refers to February 14 as the day birds (and humans) come together to find a mate. When Chaucer wrote, “For this was sent on Seynt Valentyne’s day / Whan every foul cometh ther to choose his mate,” he may have invented the holiday we know today.
You can celebrate Valentine’s Day several times a year.
Because of the abundance of St. Valentines on the Roman Catholic roster, you can choose to celebrate the saint multiple times each year. Besides February 14, you might decide to celebrate St. Valentine of Viterbo on November 3. Or maybe you want to get a jump on the traditional Valentine celebration by feting St. Valentine of Raetia on January 7. Women might choose to honor the only female St. Valentine (Valentina), a virgin martyred in Palestine on July 25, A.D. 308. The Eastern Orthodox Church officially celebrates St. Valentine twice, once as an elder of the church on July 6 and once as a martyr on July 30.
I found all of that information fascinating…I hope that you will also!
Our holidays and traditions…and the stories behind them…I have so rarely taken the time to research these things..and now, I want to know…I am thirsty for knowledge about so many things in my life right now.
I celebrate the love of my girl today, as we have been loving our way through life’s storms for the last four or so years together. Through the most difficult times, love has been our salvation and in the very best of times, love has reminded us why we are here in the first place…
I celebrate my Mom today and I honor her beautiful legacy…the legacy that was my Mom. Since her passing, I am coming to see her in a different light…I see her in the light of my Mom and I also see her in the light of a human being, just like me, who did her very best, who wanted to be loved and to love…
We are all just souls having a temporary human experience in these crazy bodies of ours. As we bump around and fumble to find our way, as we make countless mistakes and as we navigate through our dreams and our opportunities…we are bumping into others, having the same human experiences as we are…so always be kind and always be gentle.
As you travel your journey, as you meet up with others on their journey…always be love and be loving…and always be open to love…to giving and receiving…to learning and growing…
Valentines Day is but one day, amongst many other days, where we have an open-ended opportunity to put out into the world, what we would like to receive…to be love, to receive love, to celebrate love…and it is our choice…
Today, I celebrate love and I celebrate the people who love me like a verb…I celebrate the woman who taught me to love, the best she could, for her whole life, my Mom.
I celebrate the woman that loves me every day, like a verb and I am so thankful. Tamara has carried me through my very darkest days, days that I could not have navigated alone…I love you Tamara. Happy Valentine’s Day!
I also celebrate everyone in my life who loves me like a verb…everyone who ever has loved me, like a verb…all of my chosen family, my clients and my dearest friends…Happy Valentines Day! God bless us, every one.
As for the empty holes left by grief and by people who have chosen to leave…I invite these holes to be filled with unconditional love, bubbling up and overflowing all over our world…washing over us all and renewing our spirits to go out and love and be loved some more…
Happy Valentines Day everyone! Love, love, love…