12 February 2010

A Very Facebook Valentine's Day

My attitude about Valentine's Day has always been pretty much, "Eh, whatever." The reasons behind my ambivalence are the usual: it's a made-up, overcommercialized holiday; if you really love someone, you don't need a special day to tell them; you can't force romance, etc.

But this year, Facebook (of all things) has gotten my emotional knickers in a twist about February 14. Many of my FB friends are jumping on one of those themed status bandwagons, posting an image of themselves with their partner and stating how long they have been together as their update. I have to admit that it tears me up inside to see my friends with their partners, smiling happily, inadvertently boasting and marveling about how long they've been together, celebrating their partnership and love.

I want to be a big enough person to just enjoy seeing the happy photos of my friends. But instead I'm jealous. Just plain jealous.

If John were alive, we would at this point have been together for nearly seven years, married for five. Instead we got almost exactly four years together. I'm grateful for those four years, but I mourn the ones we didn't have.

Valentine's day, you can suck it.

25 comments:

Audrey said...

I'm sorry, Snick. It sucks, huh. (Yeah, "it sucks" -- that's my official response).

Your post made me think: Have you seen this project of Drew Olanoff's (@thatdrew on twitter, of the I Blame Drew's Cancer "fame") --http://ourspecialsomeone.com/. I've been thinking lately about submitting Anthony's photo to Drew. The power of photos... in a different way.

Much love, as always, to you.

Snickollet said...

Audrey:

I had not seen Drew's project. Interesting. I loved that first photo.

Love to you, too. The kids and I will likely be in your town soon-ish. I'll be in touch.

-snick

Mommy, Esq. said...

I also think the FB trend is stupid which is why I won't participate. Maybe try to enjoy the day by having Maddie and Riley make valentines for their grandparents?

Keen said...

Aw, Snick. Sorry that's got you down. I haven't seen that on Facebook yet...I'm sure I will. As much as I like Facebook, sometimes I find the most seemingly innocuous things just gut-wrenching, too.

Did you watch 30 Rock last night? You can stop calling it Valentine's Day and call it Anna Howard Shaw Day, instead.

Lots of love to you!

Anonymous said...

It's not quite the same for those of us going through a divorce, but similar enough for me to say YES. It's hard to have my failure thrust in my face. I'm happy for everyone else, but it feels like a knife in the gut at the same time.

Jana said...

I am not participating in that facebook trend because I have lots of friends who are single, divorced, widowed/er, or in a same-sex relationship not recognized as legitimate in this country. Even though I am in a traditional marriage, it seems insulting to say, in essence, "this holiday is NOT FOR YOU."

Whatever. I should post a photo of myself and a jar of Nutella, my One True Love.

Elizabeth said...

Oh, man, now I feel bad! And just when you were really missing John too. Hang in there.

Snickollet said...

Elizabeth:

Don't feel bad. Such is life, such is grief.

-snick

Snickollet said...

Elizabeth:

Don't feel bad. Such is life, such is grief.

-snick

Anonymous said...

my v-day attitude is that it's for kids. my 4 year old daughter loves the idea of hearts and all things pink and it really was cute to see her classroom celebrating. and especially cute when she decided her valentine would be her 1 yr old brother :)

Anonymous said...

Suck it indeed! Make lovey Valentines for your kids and celebrate the love between the 3 of you. Know that he is always there.

Michèle Hastings said...

i opted out on the facebook thing... i am in a new relationship but posting about that made me feel like i was diminishing the time i had with my john who has be gone for 14 months. i have guilt about a new relationship so soon after his death...

Cass said...

I'm so sorry! I feel the same way but for less of a good reason.

Celebrate Chinese New Year instead! It falls on the same day and has better food that stupid Valentine's Day.

Dorcasina said...

Ouch, ouch, ouch. These last two posts are so exactly on target with how I am feeling these days. Not much to say, except that I wish neither of us had to feel this way.

After a brief break, I am missing Dan--himself, not just the spousal presence--again, intensely. And a new set of dreams have emerged, in which he has somehow returned, healthy and whole. And then I wake up, and he's gone again, all over.

I'm feeling very down on the idea that I will ever find anyone else...it just feels like that part of my life is over, never to be revived. I hate to be such a pessimist, but a demanding job and child don't leave much room for the online BS.

One of these days, my daughter and I MUST come down and visit you. You are so close, and yet so far, somehow...

Still reading, and thinking of you often.

Snickollet said...

Dorcasina!

I've missed you.

Yes, please come visit. Or we'll come to you. When the weather gets warm and the days are longer. I'm hibernating this year.

-snick

Christy said...

I've been reading your blog for a long time but never posted.

I had the same reaction to that FB "fad" as you. I'm 32,recently single again and horribly heartbroken. I like FB in that it has allowed me to reconnect with lost friends, but hate it in that I feel like everyone is shoving in my face what I don't have. I'm, of course, happy for my friend's happiness but don't understand why I don't have that myself...

Megan said...

Ugh. I'm sorry seeing these FB updates causes pain and anger. It sucks to have to see them all the time.

On a slightly related note, I am so over these types of status updates on FB. Let's just get back to posting what we ate for lunch - I think it's far more interesting than these group updates.

A said...

I posted a photo anyway and said that if he were still alive it would be 16 years. The love we had is still worth celebrating, even if I have to do it for both of us now.

Crash Course Widow said...

Huh. Whadya know. We're thinking the exact same thing: F.U., FB. I hadn't read the latest post here on your blog yet when I wrote and posted mine this morning, but I'd seen the wedding photo you posted...so I'm widowedly happy and relieved to "hear" we felt the same way about this particular FB thing.

Hope you're ready for one hot date this afternoon...you, me, and three kids. ;o) Glad we'll be spending it together! And thanks for sharing your honesty here too.

Anonymous said...

Facebook often makes me feel jealous and pissy. Oh look - someone's going on a great trip. Oh and now that person's lost a ton of weight. Or - hey several of my friends posted pictures of an outing that I wasn't invited to. It can kinda suck that way. Sorry this week has been one of those ways.

Tamar

Yankee, Transferred said...

Hugs.

Katherine said...

Amen. I am VERY glad Valentine's Day is almost over. I have avoided Facebook, radio, TV this weekend because I can't bear to hear about it. And when I have seen couples together all weekend, I've thought, "You just got lucky." Wish my dear departed hubby and I had had that same luck . . .

liz said...

I'm sorry Snick.

Clover said...

I'm sorry it sucked and that Facebook had to make it worse. For different reasons, my Valentine's Day was also pretty weird/hard/I'm not sure.

Anonymous said...

That does suck.

I didn't see that particular FB trend personally, but I would imagine it's a similar feeling to the one I feel with people constantly posting their ultrasound photos and posting their pregnancy/baby crap in their profiles and status updates.

Our babies are dead, so it's very upsetting to be smacked with reminders on Facebook. I'm on Facebook to keep in touch with several of my closest friends, but occasionally, someone unexpected pops up with a damned ultrasound photo before I even knew I should have hidden their updates from my feed.

:/

Facebook can be great, but it can also be horrible.

FWIW, regardless of our children being dead, I still think it's tacky for people to post ultrasound photos on facebook.

I wish we could go back to the time were pregnancy was a private matter that was shared with close family only. Sighhhhh...

I have no desire to see the inside of anyone's uterus, I don't care if it contains a fetus or not. :/