My first memory of valentine’s day goes back to 14th Feb 1989!
I was a young student and went to Singapore from Iran with my sister to visit my brother who came from Australia to have a mini family reunion after my mom died.
This was my first overseas trip!
We arrived on 13th February late at night and went directly to the hotel and rested. the next day we went out.
If you were with me that day, you could have seen me I was like a child in a chocolate factory, imagine coming from a very conservative and Islamic country, going to Singapore and in my surprise, I saw the young couples holding hands and another hand holding a red rose, fancy balloon or chocolate. I saw there were thousands of red roses everywhere and people were happily buying them…I thought wow, these people are so happy and in love. I never heard of valentine’s day before so I thought how beautiful that these people show their love and affection this way, every day!
yes, you can laugh….I’m still laughing at that innocent naive girl…
When my brother saw how I was smiling and daydreaming in Lala land, he explained about valentine’s day and the fun went away, as I figured out that it was an annual thing and last only one day…
The next day as much as I was hoping it was the same as the previous day, but it was a typical busy day in a big city. There were no roses, no hand-holding except few tourist couples on their honeymoon.
After my trip to Singapore, I saw the possibility to have a life that I deserve despite the life I was born in Iran. That gave me hope, the gift of knowing I could choose and work hard to get the life I wanted and not having to settle my life in Iran was priceless.
So I decided right there to give myself the best Valentine’s day gift which was the gift of second chance to live, having the choice and to believe that I am a free girl and can take control of my life.
The decision I took that day, resulted in a series of action I took and eventually came to Australia to claim the life I deserved to live.
The best thing about this gift is it never expires and I can always reflect on the lesson and the feeling to get inspired.
So I don’t know about your experience and first memories of valentine’s day but after many years of living in Australia, I have seen this day become more commercialised every year. Now thanks to the birth of the internet and social media, every country, city and village in the world know of valentine’s day and even if it’s not acknowledged in their country’s calendar the commercials have taken over and made it more of a culture…
What does Valentine’s Day mean to you? And what is the best gift you have received on Valentine’s day?
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