Opinion: Love is an everyday occasion

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Bouquet de roses /Jebulon / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

Although the typical bouquet of roses on Valentine's Day shows care and affection, there are many different ways to show love for someone.

The dried roses on my desk and the heart-shaped chocolates in my kitchen serve as a constant reminder of Valentine’s Day. I always feel my cheeks reddening and a smile forming on my face when I look at them, but what happens when they’re no longer there?

I’m a bit of a hypocrite when it comes to Valentine’s Day; I find the classic gifts cute and thoughtful, but I don’t believe in reserving my appreciation and love for others for just one day of the year. Valentine’s Day, of course, is a great excuse to show love to someone who you’re too afraid to otherwise. But, it shouldn’t be the only day where it is “OK” to express that love for others. Love is not a one-day thing; it’s an everyday thing, and it doesn’t only have to be with a significant other.

There are countless ways to express love and appreciation to the people you care about or even to complete strangers. You can give your mom a hug every morning before leaving for school, remind your friend how much you appreciate them, or simply smile at a fellow classmate in the halls. Spreading kindness and joy means much more to someone who really needs it than a bouquet of roses once a year does.

I take this into account all the time; I’ve come to realize that the littlest things can truly make the biggest difference. Kindness should never come at a price, and it certainly shouldn’t be a once-in-awhile occurrence. You never know how much someone can be hurting or what they’re going through, so it’s always safe to just be kind to them. Kindness does no harm, so why wouldn’t you be kind if there’s no reason not to be?

Although it may sound a bit cheesy, I do believe in the notion of spreading various acts of kindness to different people every day. And these acts don’t have to be huge; they can be as small as opening the door for someone, helping them pick up their things if they dropped them, or even complimenting someone’s outfit. Doing small things like that has a much bigger impact on people’s lives than many of us think.

So remember to ask yourself what you can do to make someone’s day a better one because most of the time, it really doesn’t take that much.