You must send Valentines. I’ll tell you why below, but first I have to admit I always disliked Valentines Day.
And then last year – 5 years into a single life I hadn’t planned on – I gave it up. Instead of hating Valentines Day, I challenged myself to send Video Valentines to the people I love. And since I can easily fall prey to ‘project creep’ I made a blueprint to keep it simple, heartfelt and personal.
I sent them to my friends & family – a different one to each person. One of those people was Sylvia – the woman who’d become my impromptu foster mother when I left home at 16. I got to put all my love for Sylvia in one tiny package I knew she’d receive. This was what I sent, and I haven’t shared it with anyone else until now.
But I’m not going to get to send Sylvia a Valentine this year because she died of COVID-19 last week.
I’m heartbroken and nothing, nothing, nothing will ever replace the sound of her voice, the touch of her hand, the smell of her hair and the love I felt every time I was near her in any way.
We talked a lot in the last year about love, about loneliness, about politics and what things were like long ago – the story of how she’d met her husband Leo, the sound of celebration the day WWII was over. I’ll never get to have those conversations again. And nothing can replace them.
But I KNOW she knows I love her. Because I told her. And knowing that she had no doubt of that means so much to me.
It feels vulnerable to share something this personal on the internet but I’m doing it because I want to show how ESSENTIAL it is for us to express the love we have.
So use the excuse of Valentine’s Day. Use whatever you can, whatever you have, whoever you are – to tell the people you love that you love them, in the most authentic, direct, personal way you can.
If you need a little support, come join the “20 Seconds of Love” trainings I’ll be doing over the next week – or register for the “Video Greeting Card” class I created to make it easier for people to make these little videos and get them to the people they love.
Because you MUST send Valentines – and I hope they’ll be tiny, bite-sized Video Valentines that tell the people you love just how much you love them. In your own loving words.
Thank you so much for this.
Thank you for sharing this, Deborah. It’s the very sound and image of vulnerability… to feel that loss, to express it… knowing you’re not the only one who feels it, but still allowing yourself to express it in the only way you know how.
I lost a very dear friend very unexpectedly in November 2019. We spoke on the phone about a week before, but it had been two years since we’d seen one another and then she died alone… My heart has been breaking every day since then for what seems like a missed opportunity, and then mending every day when I remember what a gift she was and that I can still share her with everyone I meet.
Thank you for sharing. I think we all needed it.
Deborah, thank you for sharing your very personal and profound musical gift to Sylvia with us. My heart is heavy that you have lost such a dear one so recently. At the same time, I celebrate the great love you were able to express to her and are willing to share with us. You always inspire us and urge us on.
Bright blessings on you this Valentine’s Day and all other days as well.
Thank you for sharing your vulnerability. Very touching!
I’m so sorry for your loss. You and Sylvia are in my prayers.
What a lovely tribute to your dear Sylvia. There is no doubt she got the message that you love her. I’m sure she really loved you, too, Deborah. I’m so sorry you lost a very important grown-up in your life. I’m sure she’ll remain with you in spirit forever. RIP, Sylvia.