By Adrianna Owens

Pink and red cards that display luscious hearts and quotes of love line the aisles of every store in America. Walk into any store this month, and you’ll find yourself suffocated with promises of romance and seduction.

Along with the intoxicating ambiance that comes about this time of year, there also emerges a culture of singles who disregard the holiday and look forward to cuddling with their jar of Nutella and drowning their sorrows in a Netflix binge.

People in relationships, like myself, end up hiding in the shadows trying desperately to avoid the spiteful comments and harsh glances from those who don’t have a significant other to share the day of love with.

This year, I was thrown the comment, “Oh my gosh, you guys actually celebrate Valentine’s Day?”

Then I was told, in a cliche might I add, that I shouldn’t embrace Valentine’s Day because love should be given every day of the year instead of just one.

What people tend to not realize is that we live in a world that demands so much from people. So much that it is almost impossible to show your love for someone 365 days a year. When a couple has been together for years and their conversations slowly start turning monotonous, Valentine’s Day is a nice reminder of why they chose to spend their lives together.

Yes, the stores are filled to the brim with loving cards and boxes of chocolates for your significant other, but the holiday isn’t just for spouses. It’s a day of appreciation for anyone that you love whether it be your mom, dad, sister, brother or best friend.

Those who sarcastically say they will spend Valentine’s Day alone on their couch with their cat should use the day as another time to give love to their loved ones.

Family members and friends are just as important as significant others and are more commonly left out when it comes to appreciation. It is easy to pick up a card or something sweet for someone you care about, platonically or otherwise.

It’s not about the monetary vale of the items given, it’s about what work went behind getting that bouquet of flowers or making that heart-shaped card. It is about knowing that when someone was in the store shopping for you, you were the sole thing on his or her mind.

The more I think about it, the more beautiful it becomes. Sometimes, we get so wrapped up in our own lives and making time for the people that matter is quite difficult. Having one day on the calendar where we can set everything aside and really plan out a nice evening with someone we care about is needed.

Those who call Valentine’s Day “Singles Awareness Day,” or any variation of that term can just as easily direct the day to their loved ones, and celebrate love in their own way.

Adrianna Owens studies journalism. She can be reached at dcoffey@sagebrush. and on Twitter @TheSagebrush.