Valentines Day: Guess Who?

Carol Roach By Carol Roach, 28th Apr 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Personal Experiences

Little things like getting valentine's cards in school can me so much for a young child's self-esteem.


Every year my grandmother bought me valentine cutouts to exchange with my classmates. I loved them. The fact that she spent money she really didn't have just to make me happy made them special. That simple act was the true expression of love and exemplified what Valentines Day was all about.

Giving love

I always loved cutouts of any sort. I loved my cardboard dolls and their cutout clothing and I loved the beautiful valentines. I would sit for hours looking at each and every one of them; really not wanting to part with any even though I knew they were meant to be giving away. Love was meant to be given away. That much I also learned from my grandmother.

I remember the hype our little ghetto school put on for Valentines Day. We learned about Cupid and Eros and all the historical aspects pertaining to why we celebrate February 14 each year. I didn't understand the female/male kind of love, but I certainly knew the love I had for my classmates, mostly girls of course. On occasion, there were certain boys I secretly had a crush on as well. I always saved the biggest and best Valentine Cutouts for the boy I had a crush on and the girls whom I admired the most.
Like most young children, there were certain kids in the class that I was not particularly crazy about. I may not have liked them or they were mean to me.

I would have preferred not to give them a valentine. My grandmother reminded me how she bought the book to make sure nobody was left out. This was her way, she taught me to share everything I had.

I was not popular

I was not a popular child. I was fat and shy. For the most part, my classmates ignored me and when they paid attention to me it was usually to ridicule my weight. It really hurt me. I wanted so much to fit in; I didn't know how.

Some people might conclude that the generous nature I have today is really a way of buying love. That notion could not be further from the truth. My generosity is a value I learned from my beloved grandmother, though I do not give it out blindly. I have learned to discriminate real people from those whom we call "users".

I am no longer the little girl who didn't know the difference. I gave away my love through my valentine cutouts to everyone in the class and all I wanted was to be loved in return.
I was so disappointed when I got four or five valentines back, while all the popular kids had so many. Some kids received multiples from the same person.

It could be said that some kids couldn't afford the cutouts at all and that would be true. It was a ghetto school. Some kids didn't have breakfast or lunch, why would they have valentine cutouts to give to others?

But then, I often wondered how much of the problem really was that I was not liked? Ivy could give Linda, the most popular girl in class three valentines. Why couldn't she give me just one?

Maybe Ivy was one of the children who signed guess who; that was always possible. Yet with Linda she was able to sign her name. Why?

As a child I was desperate to know who gave me a valentine, who loved me? Today, I know who loves me. My special valentines can sign guess who; I will always know who they are.

All photos taken from the public domain

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Getting Valentines Cards, Valentines Cards, Valentines Cutouts, Valentines Day

Meet the author

author avatar Carol Roach
Retired therapist and author of two books, freelance writer, newsletter editor, and blogger. I write, health, mental health, women's issues, animal , celebrity, history, and SEO articles.

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