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It’s that season again, when everything and everywhere turns red. People, young and old, paint the town and big city the colour of blood and Rose flower. Like light at the Stadium on the World Cup final night, smiles illuminate the faces of cake and chocolate confectioners as their orders increase. Their smiles broaden as they pocket their cash and cheques. Valentine’s Day is here once more and we will be celebrating love again!

Really, why fix one particular day for love like we are celebrating love’s birthday? Do you even know when love was born? Love is meant to reside permanently in our hearts and breathe through our actions, and we don’t have to wait till February 14 every year to now ‘do birthday’ for the ‘thing’. Or do we? Anyways, just like we have ‘Independence day’, ‘Democracy Day’, ‘Boxing Day’, ‘International Day for Youth’, ‘Eid-il-Fitri’, Eid-il-Kabir’, and those many holidays and special days, I believe it just makes some sense to set aside a day to celebrate love and emphasize that word, idea, or concept – you can take a pick!

“Love makes the world go round”, someone would say. But as we celebrate ‘love’s birthday’ this year, we need to ask ourselves, do we truly believe in love? What is your definition of love and how do you show love to those you care for? On Valentine’s night, as much as we may preach many beds and cushions and whatever will rock and feel pain, some will even get damaged, illegally! Many girls are likely to lose their innocence that very night in the name of love, only to wake up the morning after with a deep sense of guilt, regret and hurt that could last a lifetime. A few days, or even weeks, or even months later, the same person you go to despicable lengths to satisfy sexually is most likely to disown you. They would even blame you and call you names later, saying you are not responsible or ‘marriage material’, or ‘pure’.

This year, here’s a call that we all lead responsible lives and always be true to our conscience. Love entails doing unto others only that which you would like that they do to you. If you still have a warped definition/understanding of love, go get it straight. After all, ‘if sex were equal to love, then we could conclude that all prostitutes love their clients!’ This calls for crucial introspection and an advance decision never to seize control of our lives and selves, only to give it to our emotions and sexual organs – only lower animals do that. Let everything you do today, in this season and beyond be in moderation and do not be selfish. Show sincere love and appreciation to those who have made impact in your life in many ways over the years, in a special way. Call them, send a customized text, get them cake and chocolate, beautiful hand-made cards, and any of the wonderful gifts too many for this space. Surprise people who cannot, or are most likely never going to be able to, return your kind gesture and those who hardly deserve your kindness.

Let us all celebrate true love – that which is patient, kind and puts others first. Happy Valentine’s Day to you all and happy birthday to ‘love’! 🙂

Photo credit: www.ochorioscatering.net