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Alone ≠ Lonely

Miranda Blakeman, writer

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Valentine’s Day marks a period of frantic chocolate shopping, followed by the penetrating smell of rose bouquets in between classrooms and girls in red lipstick, boys shopping around meticulously for the largest teddy bear in the abyss of Wal-Mart’s glorious shelves. Although to many, V-Day is just another weekday with a bit more people in red, there genuinely is a beauty in the celebration of love.

As the school year passes its halfway mark and the new year embraces us with open arms, we often find ourselves searching for some sort of self betterment, but delay making those changes out of the sheer fact that we’re too busy. There’s always something else to tend to, or someone else to care for.

Don’t get me wrong, loving unconditionally is a beautiful thing; you should always take pride in your kindness and giving nature. But, if you’re looking for the best way to impress to your girlfriend this holiday season, or a date plan for your special night, this probably isn’t the article for you — or maybe it is.

The truth is, the largest challenge you’ll ever face throughout high school will never be impressing those around you, but instead learning to truly love yourself. Sometimes that means admiring the eyebrows you spent thirty minutes crafting this morning. Sometimes it means remembering to take your medication.

When you fill yourself with love, it radiates through you and onto every surrounding person. In the words of Roald Dahl, “A person who thinks good thoughts cannot ever be ugly. You can have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth, and a double-chin and stick out teeth, but if you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.”

If February’s losing its luster and the fourteenth leaves you unfulfilled and lonely, maybe it’s time to be your own valentine (as backwards as it might seem). As an incessantly broke introvert with a teenage stress level, I’ve compiled a list of affordable ways to treat yourself, by yourself.

  1. Change your bedding; it may seem subtle and pointless, but clean sheets will make all the difference in how you sleep. If you don’t feel up to cleaning, move the dirty dishes out of your room. Focus on small tasks that will make you feel accomplished but won’t feel like work at all.
  2. Literally throw whatever bath products you have into your tub  t. That soap you got from Lush last Christmas? Use it. Body wash from the dollar store? Dump it into your water until the bubbles are as tall as you are.
  3. Meet your skin’s savior: dollar face masks from the cosmetic aisle.
  4. Gorge yourself on insane amounts of fruit; it’s fruit — you won’t get fat.
  5. Marathon your favorite films and TV shows. My personal favorite series at the moment is Breaking Bad, but if you’re looking for something uplifting with a little less death, Submarine, Moonrise Kingdom, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind are your definite go-to.

Of course, eating strawberries and washing your hair isn’t going to cure you, but through acts of self care, you’ll grow comfortable in the time spent with yourself. You’ll learn that the words alone and lonely aren’t always synonymous. You’re just as capable of loving you as anyone else.

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The student news site of Taylor County High School
Alone ≠ Lonely