“First best is falling in love. Second best is being in love. Least best is falling out of love. But any of it is better than never having been in love.”
― Maya Angelou
Oh Valentine’s Day, the candy heart-strewn, chocolate rose-laden holiday brought on by the blindfolded Cupid himself. Whether this February 14th brings feelings of bitterness, elation or a little bit of both, everyone could use a little encouragement.
Here are the quotes to get you through the holiday, to pull your head even further into the clouds, or to give you the jolt of independence you need.
If you’re feeling effeminate and empowered, Galentine’s Day or bust: nothing but girl power. Amy Poehler said it best when she described the celebration of womanhood as, “the best day of the year. Every February 13th, my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home, and we just come and kick it, breakfast-style.” To those lucky ladies celebrating a full-force Galentine’s Day, strengthen those bonds between your girlfriends. There is nothing like sheer sisterly love to perk up a woman’s self- esteem, and to have her ready to conquer the world.
“When we do the hard, intimate work of friendship, we bring a little more of the divine into daily life.”
“We’re getting ready to take over the world. My group of girlfriends — we’re renegades.”
Or perhaps, you are surrounded by the warmth and consistency of a long-time relationship: your love is tried and true. Like your favorite pair of jeans, there is something to be said about the tailor-made comfort and wear of a lasting relationship. The trials have been fought and won, and the hard times have been felt, making the sweeter times all more worth fighting for.
“But the heart’s not like a box that gets filled up. It expands in size the more you love.”
“How is it that the poets have said so many fine things about our first love, so few about our later love? Are their first poems their best? Or are not those the best which come from their fuller thought, their larger experience, their deeper-rooted affections?”
-George Eliot, “Adam Bede”
On the other hand, maybe this Valentine’s Day is all about you, and you couldn’t be more content- you’re Miss (or Mister) Independent. You’ve done the relationship thing, and it just isn’t your style. Other people have lost their luster to you, and it’s about time you got a little pampering for yourself. This year, you are focusing on your own journey, your own growth. After all, how can you fully love someone else if you cannot first love yourself?
“I don’t want to wait anymore. I choose to believe that there is nothing more sacred or profound than this day. I choose to believe that there may be a thousand big moments embedded in this day, waiting to be discovered like tiny shards of gold. The big moments are the daily, tiny moments of courage and forgiveness and hope that we grab on to and extend to one another.”
“You will lose someone you can’t live without, and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp.”
At the same time, this holiday can sometimes bring emptiness: maybe you’re working through heartache. The pain that is felt after losing a relationship is unique, raw and unmatched, like a certain strain of a virus that only brings on a particular pain. The world feels bigger, we feel smaller and everything seems dim. Grief plagues all kinds of love, no matter the situation. That being said, know that from pain only comes growth and a deeper understanding. Though it may not seem like it now, the emptiness that you feel is filling you and sustaining you for the future. You’re going to be okay.
“You deserve love and you’ll get it.”
– Amy Poehler
“Someday you’re gonna look back on this moment of your life as such a sweet time of grieving. You’ll see that you were in mourning and your heart was broken, but your life was changing…”
– Elizabeth Gilbert
Or, maybe all you need this Valentine’s Day is a little push. Psst…make a move. This could be your shot. Think you might like a girl, but too afraid to speak to her? Tired of your girlfriends writing you off and saying you don’t have the guts to make a move? It is high time that you put some pep in your step and to chase the romance you deserve.
“No one ever fell in love without being a little bit brave.”
– Mario Tomasello
“Love, like everything else in life, should be a discovery, an adventure, and like most adventures, you don’t know you’re having one until you’re right in the middle of it.”
– E.A. Bucchianeri, “Brushstrokes of a Gadfly”
No matter what this day holds for each of us, it is crucial that we uplift and encourage one another. As we feel whatever emotions come in tow, whether in love, falling out of love or waiting patiently, we must love one another.