Happy Valentine’s Day. I hope it’s one of those days where you feel attracted to someone who feels attracted to you back. If you’re a pre-menopausal woman, I hope you are somewhere in the 7-11 day range of your cycle, so your estrogen-testosterone hormone cocktail sets you up for a good time. I hope you feel healthy and strong and liked and loved and secure and are able to relax however you like to relax. I hope you are feeling excited in your aspirations and creative with your time, confident that all the major life boxes are in order – Finances – Companionship – Health – Family – Community – Education. I hope you are anticipating something delicious tonight and that you have the energy to savor it. If this is you today, this Valentine’s post is not for you. Not you today anyway.
However, if you happen to NOT be having a day like this…read on.
Beware the pile of shit that is labeled “NOSTALGIA.” The letters might be loopy or in calligraphy – something that will remind you of the prettier parts of your shittier past. You will not notice an odor because, well, because memories don’t smell. While an actual scent triggers memory in our brains, it doesn’t work the other way around. Why? Because there is nothing the fuck there. In other words, memories take us out of the present, out of our sensations and physical awareness.
**Some signs you may be dumping your reality and approaching Shit:
-an impulse to take selfies on the Snapfish app you have downloaded just for the filters and then post them to social media sites you typically do not frequent or send them to people for really no reason at all;
-making calls or sending texts to people with whom you have intentionally opted out of relationship. This includes friendships that ended for a reason and on clear terms, saying “hi” to exes or responding to some text from long ago that came from someone in the same pile of shit that you are currently trying to side-step. I’m not saying to never revisit relationships from the past. Actually, I am saying that. You can’t get a good data read on what was. You did the best you could with the data points you had at the time, but Nostalgia is a lake of shit, and those logic points are like rocks at the bottom of the lake. They are gone. The world population is 7.9 billion, up from 2 billion at the turn of the 20th Century and 1 billion a hundred years before that. While not all viable, that’s a large enough pool to support losing a few phone numbers that invariably lead to you-know-where on days like today. Connect to authentic old friends on days like described in paragraph one.
-Unchecking ANY of the boxes checked in paragraph one. Maybe you have never lived in paragraph one. No problem. You can tap into that “good enough” version that makes sense at least one or two days of the week – the one where your reality isn’t one of being destitute and unloveable. Brilliant ideas and sustainable intimacy are not born from fear. So don’t fuck with your money, career and/or family. Not today.
On Valentine’s Day, don’t ditch your reality and cozy up to a version that suits your hormonal ‘cocktail du jour’. When you feel a little or a lot of shitty, steer clear of anything with filters (except air filters) or you will be prone to mistaking Nostalgia’s touch-ups for the real deal. And unfortunately, even after your hormones stabilize and you have trudged your way through to the other side, that shit sticks.