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Seun Tuyo: Love Beyond Valentine’s Day

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February is commonly regarded as the month of love, mainly because February 14 is Valentine’s Day. It is a day when people show love, affection and appreciation for the people they love or adore. These can be in form of a romantic getaway, presentation of gifts like flowers (particularly roses), chocolates, cakes, cards and/or jewelry. Others make marriage proposals or get married on that day. This tradition dates as far back as the 5th Century.

Last weekend was Valentine’s weekend and the whole fanfare of gifting and show of love happening around was overwhelming. Many beautiful pictures and heartwarming messages flooded the different social media platforms. I began to think, after today, what happens? Will some of these people have to wait another year to show or receive this type of love and affection? Hmm…

Although there is absolutely nothing wrong in celebrating Valentine’s Day a certain way (except for the extra pounds gained as a result excessive consumption of chocolates and cakes), we should not limit ourselves or forget to celebrate other days in the year with people we love. This love can be for your family or friends. It does not have to be the direct and cliché “once in a lifetime valentine blues” savoured with the public display of affection. It could be performed indirectly by offering good deeds in form of selfless service and charitable works to others as a contribution to making the world a better place for everyone.

For me, everyday is an opportunity to show someone love – whether you are romantically involved with them or not. Oftentimes we fail to show love either because the society has made it very daunting or out of our own negligence. With all the negativity and hatred going on around, it is so easy to believe that that is all there is. However, in the midst of these, there are tiny whispers of love and opportunities to express love every second of the day.

Love requires action; it is not a physical thing you can quantify or label on a shelf. It is an action you express outwardly to others through sharing and helping, consciously. You can only show love to the living, someone who is able to appreciate your actions.

Death doesn’t come for only persons of a specific age. No one, whether old or young, knows when he or she will be called home. If you have life, you can show love and appreciation to the next person when they can still value your contributions.

Funerals are held elaborately and some can be likened to a fanfare. From touching eulogies to beautiful wreaths and matching attires, we cannot even begin to describe the lavish meals and music blaring from speakers. The questions that come to mind are these: Does the person lying in the coffin know how much they meant to these people? Did they seize the numerous opportunities to show love and appreciation to them before it was too late? Did they eat the same meals that people share over their death while they were alive? Or can they even hear or read the heartwarming messages from these people?

Why not express love to them when they are alive and as soon as you feel the need to (not only once a year), that way, the tributes written at the funeral will not be something you wish they had known.

I subscribe to the newsletters by Tyler Perry, an American actor, and I received a very touching mail that read thus:

I haven’t visited my Mother’s grave since she died 6 years ago. I know some people may find that strange, but I don’t. I don’t feel the need to stand over stone and cold ground talking to her when I know she’s with me all the time. I don’t feel the need to bring flowers and lay them on a tomb when I gave her her flowers everyday when she was alive. She would always say to me, “give me my flowers while I can smell them” and smell them she did. I remember for the last few years of her life I had run out of birthday gift ideas.

I had given her everything I could. So, every year on her birthday I started sending her flowers. I mean, enough flowers to make the whole house smell like a rose. She would walk from flower to flower taking in the smell. February 12th is a very special day to me. So to help me celebrate it, can you show some love for the living today? Give flowers to the living today, and that may not mean a physical flower. It could mean to show kindness to someone, smile at someone, or make someone’s day by just showing up for them.

We tend to forget the difference one little action can make in the life of someone else. Every action, negative of positive, has the potential of producing a reaction – good or evil. Do not let the opportunity pass by – whether it is someone trying to get in front of you in traffic courteously, someone with genuine need for help or someone who needs some positive energy, one small action of love can bear forth a bigger action in return or be paid forward.

And so…

If you need to buy flowers and chocolates for someone, do not wait for Valentine’s Day, do it before the eulogy.

If you have the means to feed someone you care about in a certain way, do not wait for Valentine’s Day, do it before the eulogy.

If you have to share kind and heartfelt messages with someone, do not wait for Valentine’s Day, do it before the eulogy.

If you need to make an apology, do it before the eulogy.

Time is too precious for us to take the ones we love for granted.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Orangeline

Seun Tuyo is interested in social development. She loves to interact with people and has a desire to make a profound and positive impact around the world. She suffers moments of weaknesses at the sight of a cold bottle of Coca-cola and Chocolates. Feel free to reach her on twitter and instagram @seuntuyo.

21 Comments

  1. SuperNova

    February 18, 2015 at 2:06 am

    Words of wisdom usually overlooked. Love should be expressed anytime.

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:48 am

      I completely agree

  2. Uncle Gee ya neighbor

    February 18, 2015 at 9:06 am

    Nice write up, please make dinner before the eulogy

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:48 am

      lol this brother of mine!!!!

  3. flora

    February 18, 2015 at 9:20 am

    Great write up Seun as usual. I love the way you linked it to showing love even to the living rather than the dead. The dead neither sees no feels what good gifts come after they’re gone. So let those who care to read this article do so, as we pass through this world but once and whatever good deeds or love we can display let’s do it every day not only on Valentine’s day, for we may not be opportuned to do so tomorrow as it may be too late ..So show some love to those around you not only this once. One love keep us together! ! Good job! !

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:49 am

      Thank You mommy

  4. Michelle

    February 18, 2015 at 9:38 am

    If only people knew how priceless and of utmost importance love is to be given at every chance! Tomorrow isn’t promised for anyone, so why wait!?
    Nice write-up

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:49 am

      Exactly @Michelle, Thank You

  5. Rynyx

    February 18, 2015 at 9:55 am

    @uncle gee ya neighbour,this is definitely Gerald. Seun Biko cook for am o and hopefully, there will be no eulogy anytime soon. Brilliant write up seun. I have no problem with Valentines day, its just the way people around me go about it. my idea of showing love is to give to people who cannot pay you back. not buy a gift for someone because you expect something in return, isn’t that trade by barter? you can start by feeding your security man today. amazing how many people don’t even bother about those people. do it before the eulogy. well done seun.

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:50 am

      Thanks Rynyx

  6. naana

    February 18, 2015 at 9:56 am

    my grandma will always tell me to spend my mone , time and love on her whiles she’s alive than spending on her funeral.
    i have learnt to love and appreciate every day and all people i come across.

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:50 am

      Thank You Naana

  7. freda

    February 18, 2015 at 10:22 am

    Awesome write up,good words of wisdom. Love showed be an everyday affair and not the noise we hear on valentines day alone.

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:50 am

      Thank You Freda

  8. cleo

    February 18, 2015 at 10:24 am

    Very insightful. To show love to all living around you is a priceless thing to do. No matter how little, a smile, a glass of water, a ride, a hug.
    That aside, valentines day is over hyped joor. And is because people are making a lot of money from it.

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:51 am

      Hmmm…I do not quite agree with it been over hyped, maybe just a little. LOL. Thank You Cleo

  9. somi YJ

    February 19, 2015 at 12:25 am

    Very lovely post Miss Tuyo. Please keep it up dear….

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:52 am

      Thanks Somi

  10. Joy Babasola

    February 19, 2015 at 6:39 pm

    Beautiful write up my darling sister. God shows us love everyday so we need to do same since we are created in His image and likeness. Love is the greatest gift of all

    • Seun Tuyo

      April 9, 2015 at 9:52 am

      Thank U Joy!

  11. Valentine

    March 23, 2015 at 12:03 pm

    What is your view on having a married man as a val

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