Yes, you read that right.
This Valentine’s Day, I’m writing love notes to all my First Thursday girls. (First Thursday girls are a group of my friends from high school that get together the first Thursday of every month for dinner at someone’s house. I’ve known the majority of these girls since I was in kindergarten. I think we’ve been doing this for almost two years at this point.)
At our Christmas shindig I explained my idea for February’s dinner and everyone rolled their eyes. Mostly because they’re just tired of me coming up with weird ideas and making them do it so I can write about it. But here’s my thinking: some of us give cards to our spouses or boyfriends and some of us don’t give cards to anyone because we’re single. And while romantic love is grand and lovely and blah blah blah, there are a lot of other people in my life that I love and I probably don’t tell enough.
Last year I wrote about how I love Valentine’s Day and wish more people didn’t think it was such a terrible thing. But one of the reasons I love this completely made-up and ridiculous holiday is because I get to do fun stuff with my kids whom I love dearly, I get to wear pink and red to school and not feel like I’m clashing, and people are just nicer to each other on this day. So when I was thinking about loving people well (something I want to do better), I thought about all the non-romantic love I have for people in my life and how they might not know how much I dig them.
So I’m writing love notes to my girlfriends this year. And I’m making them write them also even though they’re all grumbling and one person has dubbed this “lesbian card exchange.” I’m not asking for everyone to write page-long letters to everyone else in the group, but I am asking everyone to write something. A little encouragement, a thanks, a funny story, a favorite memory of them, whatever, I’m just asking my friends to write to each other. It’s making some people really uncomfortable and I realize that not everyone loves to write like I do, but I do know that everyone likes to receive cards and handwritten ones are best, so we’re working through the grumbling.
I’m also completely aware that my friends are good sports. I find it slightly funny that they roll their eyes at my ideas and then just do it anyway. Those are some good friends, guys. Go get yourself some of those if you don’t have them.
So tonight I’m exchanging Valentine’s Day cards with my girlfriends. I didn’t think through whether we’d open them up in front of everyone, I kinda hope we don’t, but I can’t wait to hand out my cards. And I hope this sticks, that we get to spend every February for years to come trading cards with each other. Some of these girls were around to put their Cabbage Patch and Lisa Frank cards in my shoebox mailbox in elementary school and I’m just thankful they’re still in my life. And that they just roll their eyes and accept me.