Happy Valentine’s Day (Update)

by tamarjacobson

Always an important day for me as I think of my friend Jan’s birthday. She in Italy, me here. Souls somewhere in the middle. I called her this morning but had to leave a message. I wonder if she is out working with all those olive trees in her back yard. I have been reading aloud from Natalie Goldberg in the graduate course on early childhood literacy that I teach this semester. She reminded me to write. Just follow my thoughts and write without stopping for ten minutes or so. Choose a topic, she suggests, and then write non stop whatever comes to mind, body, heart and soul. And so, here I am writing about Valentine’s Day, I guess. Most of my memories about this day are connected to the past 20 years living in America. There are cards and chocolates all over the place, pink and red hearts abound. I always think about those people who are without a companion or partner at this time and how it makes them feel. Most people I know could care less about Valentine’s Day. My nephew even knows someone who calls it Valentime‘s day. We will go out to dinner tonight and this morning I gave Tom a card from Ada. After all, she loves him dearly. She especially likes to sit on his stomach while he lies in front of the TV or when he is all laid back on the sofa reading the Times. Hm … I think I will buy some chocolate kisses today for the students in my undergraduate educational psychology class this morning. They will have been having fun at their field placement site because I am sure the school they are working in will be celebrating the day. All the children drawing hearts and giving out cards. My mind wanders to the children who will be left out, excluded, and who will feel cold and lonely on the inside while smiling – or trying to – on the outside. I pause in my writing to think of those children, wishing I could wrap my arms around all of them. When I was Director of the campus child care center back in Buffalo almost 4 years ago, sometimes we would go out to the Anchor Bar for beer and Buffalo wings. Many of the teachers were single women and hated Valentine’s Day. And so, we would gather at the Bar and share the pain with food and laughter. Ah, those were the days.

I pause again in my writing exercise, because Tom has appeared at my door this early morning. He has a card for me! Hurray! It reads: "Sweet Heart" on the front, the letters encircled by pastel colors in orange, green, pink, purple and yellow. I smile and laugh and clap my hands. Imagine that if you will. I think my ten minutes are up. I am thinking of all my friends far and wide, Cyber or virtual, my darling son, family members of all types shapes and sizes all over the country and world and wish us all much loving, without exclusion. I wrap my arms around us all and wish us a Happy Valentine’s Day.

A year ago at Mining Nuggets
: Stand in wisdom

Update – February 15:

Well, yesterday was a regular working day that included a small accident on the Highway on my commute home. Luckily no damage to me but small nicks and breaks to my trusted vehicle and lots of fear and shock and amazement about the miracle of life!

I finally got through to my dear friend Jan to wish her a belated Happy Birthday. We talked at length on the phone about the corruption of politics and our hopes for Obama. We talked about writing too. Jan is such a writer! I told her about my post and how I thought she might be working with her olive trees over there in Italia. Actually, she said, "I was under the olive trees – hoeing out deadly weeds." She added, "I’m never lonely when I’m hoeing under my olive trees because of endless conversations I am having with myself."

You see? Such a writer!

A year ago at Mining Nuggets: Harsh and exciting (Update)