I know that many (not just singles) get frustrated when it comes to love and romance. And I’m aware that some (not just women) have completely given up on finding their ‘special someone.’ But I hope only a small minority (like my fictional character Emma Burcelli) are so disillusioned with love that they’ve concluded that romance is dead. Because, really, that would be just plain sad. I mean, if love makes the world go ‘round—where would we all be?
Yet as Valentine’s Day approaches, with all its frenzied focus on hearts and flowers and undying love, I can understand how it might make a lonely heart feel even worse. Why wouldn’t it? It’s totally understandable how someone trapped on the wrong side of love might secretly despise those smirking cupids, frilly valentines, and gigantic boxes of chocolates. Okay, that’s crazy—I mean who doesn’t like chocolate?
But celebrating a holiday (overblown with commercialism) that’s totally devoted to romance…well, I’m sure it’s enough to make some folks want to hurl…something… maybe a bag of those chalky conversational hearts. Anyway, I get this. In fact, that was the very inspiration for my Valentine’s novella (Once Upon a Winter’s Heart). Because not everyone is in love with the love holiday. For a lot of people, Valentine’s Day is downright disheartening.
So now it’s tempting to get all serious. I could climb on my soapbox and point my finger at our warped contemporary culture for the way it’s distorted our perceptions of love and romance and commitment. I could yammer on about how chivalry is dead. How texting ‘love u babe’ doesn’t cut it. How women are too critical of men. Or how men are too obsessed with football. I could really complain about the way media has twisted and exploited love and romance so that the younger generation is totally clueless. I could go on and on—and legitimately so.
But, really, I’d rather just focus on romance…and why (despite our current culture) we cannot allow it to die. Not in our own lives or in the world at large. Because here’s what I believe: anyone can be a romantic. Anyone!
So maybe you’re wondering—what is a romantic? In my opinion a romantic is one who holds onto ideals—thinking the best of others and hoping for brighter days for all. A romantic is someone who believes in miracles—whether it’s the miracle of true love, a newborn baby, or a generous and merciful God.
I think a true romantic is one who knows how to enjoy and share the everyday sweetness in life, simple things like hot cocoa or spring violets or a rose-colored sunset. A romantic is resilient and open to new possibilities…a romantic doesn’t give up. Most of all, I think a romantic is someone who loves whole-heartedly—whether it’s your crush, or your cat, or your spouse of fifty years. And that is why I believe we must keep romance alive and well—no matter where you are in your life. The good news is that, whether or not you’re involved in a romantic relationship, you can still be a romantic. Viva romance!
About Once Upon a Winter’s Heart
Emma Burcelli concludes that love is officially dead when her grandfather, the last true romantic, suddenly passes away. To help her devastated grandmother, Emma works in the family bookstore, which, according to her grandfather’s wishes, must be decked out for Valentine’s Day. Although she feels like a V-Day Scrooge, Emma discovers that hanging hearts is more fun when Dean Martin, chocolates and a handsome guy are involved.
[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]https://www.carlalaureano.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/4-M-Carlson-Oct-10.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Melody Carlson is one of the most prolific novelists of our time. With more than 200 books published and sales topping 6.5 million, she’s won numerous honors and awards, including Romantic Times Lifetime Achievement award. She makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband of 35 years.