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February is the month of love and by the end of January the world starts exchanging bright lights for heart shaped chocolates. I have had some great Valentine's Day celebrations in my time but deep down I've always felt it was a bit of a sham. With every red rose and teddy bear (which I was very grateful for, don't get me wrong!) I just felt an undertone of obligatory actions. I don't mean to say that everyone who gives a gift on this day is only doing it because they have to, but we can't deny that people in relationships really have no choice if they want to keep their relationships peaceful (you know there are some crazy girls (and guys!) out there!).

To an extent I still feel that way now, why can't I get a romantic gesture every day of the week? Must I really wait till that one day in the year where you have no choice to receive a display of affection? But something has changed. Whereas I have always been a very matter-of-fact kind of girl and rarely saw the 'girly' side of things (babies are my one weakness), these days I find myself 'awww-ing' and 'OMG-ing' over cute puppies and romantic gestures! I really knew I was converted when I started tearing up over a movie!!!

I guess it's just part of becoming a woman but I must say I miss my 'manly' days. The days where I could sit with a bunch of guys and understand their way of thinking, when 'mushiness' was impossible and my mascara was safe! Don't get me wrong I am still nowhere near as emotional or girly as most women but I feel out of place in this new emotion filled world, like the only one who wore black to an all white party!

Emotions are good but women are known to act (or over-react as the case may be!) based on them and very rarely do I hear a happy ending come from doing so. The more emotional I'm becoming, the more my ideas on what I want are changing and therefore my 'old' life doesn't seem to fit in with this new me that I'm becoming. Things that didn't used to matter are now of paramount importance, I am unable to let things go without appropriate resolution and I find myself paying more attention to details that previously had no relevance to me. The world has gone from black, white and grey to technicolour!

With this new awareness the concept of time also became an issue. I have never been too bothered by it, I think getting old is just a part of life (unlike these Botox addicts!) but I now find myself placing markers in the time I have left. I'm not at an age that anyone would consider old but things like 'success', 'time to settle down' and 'biological clock' keep coming to mind. I've always had a clear idea of what I wanted from life but now it seems like the finer details that I had never considered are becoming of great importance. For example, I've always wanted a big house, now I have to think of a big house in an affordable area that isn't too rural (no bush life for me!), with a low crime rate and good schools for my future kids! No guy I know has even considered any of these aspects! Things like Valentine's Day are no longer just a day to do what is expected, it's a day that a person shows they care enough to uphold a tradition that we all know is a sham (those overpriced restaurants are a joke!) in order to prove that you really are special to them.

So yeah, I have inherited/acquired/developed what I call the 'awww factor' and man, I feel like a woman!

Janelle Monáe tux
Nobody can wear a tuxedo the way Janelle Monáe can!

First Published: Feb 15, 2011

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