The things I loved in February


My illegible, too-far zoomed-out document of all the things I loved in February

Valentine’s Day is about love, so naturally, I grew up pretending to hate it. I gagged at my parent’s cheesy gifts to each other and spent the day mortified by the very thought of passing out candy to my classmates.

Like my young self, many people despise the day for one reason or another; others simply adore it. Personally, I have grown into a state of complete indifference surrounding the whole day. 

I don’t pretend that I hate the color pink anymore. I don’t fake throw up every time my parents wish each other a happy Valentine’s Day. I honestly don’t care about it at all. 

But this year, I decided to do something different. I decided that instead of making Valentine’s Day a celebration of romantic love, I would have it symbolize my love of all things around me, whether they are majorly or minorly important. 

So, for the entire month of February, I have been compiling a list of things I find in my life that I completely and absolutely love. And here it is. A small and obviously incomplete list of all the things I loved in the first two weeks of February. 

I love pomegranates. I love dark chocolate, cappuccinos, and sitting on library floors. I love riding the bus in the morning and going out to eat. I love when I wake up anytime between one and four-thirty in the morning and get to enjoy the complete blanket of silence my world has fallen asleep under. 

I love when it rains in any city, but especially in NYC. I love my old seventh-grade band class, random interactions with strangers, and the first time grass looks green in the spring. 

I love talking to old friends, people I used to know but don’t anymore. I love hearing their stories and how much life they’ve lived since we last talked. 

I love sweaters that are too big, afternoons at Schuler’s books, and warm, Disney-esque libraries.

I love you two, my two best friends. I love you and our group chat and being in the locker room after practice. I love your stupid jokes and bad humor. I love how much we laugh when we’re together. I love when I laugh so hard I cry (which actually happens quite often when I’m with you).

I love sweaters that are too big, afternoons at Schuler’s books, and warm, Disney-esque libraries. I love reading too much and procrastinating my work. I love crying over books after loving them too hard. 

I love that the only time I listen to Taylor Swift, I’m in your car. I love that you love Taylor Swift and I only do when I’m with you. I love that you make it better somehow. I love driving with you. No matter where we’re going, I’d rather you take me. I love when you threaten to kick me out of your car, and I love that you’ll probably be doing that for the rest of our lives. 

I love movie theaters when it’s raining out, Yorkshire Gold tea, and Downton Abbey. I love walking through hotels at night and eating breakfast in them in the morning. 

I love the corner chair in my Grandparent’s house, and spending Friday afternoons sprawled across it. I love watching Death in Paradise with my aunt, grandma, and sister. I love Culver’s ice cream and Costco pizza. 

I love poetry, perfectly peeled oranges, and sharing clothes. I love pinky promises and when people say my name. I love having acquaintances, mutual, unspoken understandings between people, and knowing you’ll always turn around and look at me in Spanish when we need a partner. 

I love being remembered. I love seeing people out of context and saying hello to them. I love compliments passed from stranger to stranger over a bathroom mirror. I love brief hallway smiles, long car rides, having nothing to do, and going to bed too late. 

I love sleeping on the beach and the lighter shade my hair turns in the summer. I love falling asleep in cars during road trips. I love annotated books, layers of soft clothes and blankets, and classic literature. 

I love cats. I love comfortable silences. I love smiling through language barriers. I love Mexican food. I love Seinfeld. I love people-watching. I love early-morning plane rides. 

I love love. I love those “humans being human” TikToks, long hugs, and the “found family” trope. I love watching people dance in Central Park, sing while walking out of a theater, and talk quietly when no one else can hear them. I love that half-whispered thanks people murmur to each other when a door is held open early in the morning, late-night texting, and deep conversations when it’s too dark to see.

And honestly, I love Valentine’s Day. I love that however cheesy and commercialized it is, people spend time and energy dedicating a whole day to love. 

I really do love so many things. There are thousands of beautiful things in the world to love—if you think about it. They don’t have to be big. Half the things on this list I experience at least once a day. 

Love exists in so many places, so many people, and in so many different forms, that if you really think about it, it’s almost impossible to go through even one day without discovering something that you truly, wholeheartedly love. 

I decided that that’s what Valentine’s Day is going to mean for me this year.