Hey babes! I’m Jonalyn; our customer engagement coordinator here at T&S. I am an Aries goddess, dancing queen and everything in between. With Valentine’s Day on the horizon it can be a less than enthusiastic time for those who aren’t in relationships. For lovers, this is a time to celebrate with candy sweethearts, giant teddy bears, heartfelt cards and a dozen red roses. But where does that leave the rest of us who won’t be exchanging tender smooches with their beaux? Let me share my short story with you on how I changed the narrative of Valentine’s Day and started celebrating myself. Regardless of your relationship status, I hope this humble story inspires you to redefine your Valentine’s Day and to find ways to indulge on little dates with yourself all year long.
In fall of 2014 I picked up and moved about 2,000 miles across the country from the suburbs of Boston to Denver, Co, at the time a foreign land for me.
Prior to moving, I had visited the city for about 48 hours before deciding I was all in on continuing my career dancing with one of the cities premiere dance Companies. An exciting step towards pursuing my dreams, I packed my bags, arranged to ship my car, said farewell to my family, and friends and bought my one-way flight. I was rolling the dice and betting on landing on my feet in Denver by making such an abrupt move.
Months passed and I was beginning to make new friends. To say I was busy doesn’t begin to explain it. I was working all day at Nordstrom selling lingerie then dancing all night, no days off, ever. Outside of working and dancing, I knew no one, so dating? Yeah right. The holidays came and went and Valentine’s day approached, Saturday, February 15th 2015. By some anomaly it was a Saturday night that I had off and to myself. I had two options, I could stay home snuggled in front of my tiny tv like I did any other night I had off or I could venture downtown and treat myself to dinner and a night out, solo.
How dare I get dressed up in my favorite dress, favorite heels and prance down to Lorimer square and request a table for one on the biggest “hallmark” date nights of the year. Yeah, I had the nerve. I’ll never forget how empowering it felt to not give a flying you know what about all of the “she's out alone tonight” stares. I was in great company with myself and felt empowered by my own bravery. Having that kind of courage was, and still isn’t easy but I pretended it was and often re-visit that memory when I’m facing something that requires such courage..
Since that night, I have continued taking myself on these romantic outings, on Valentine’s day, my birthday and any other occasion I feel like celebrating. It is one of my favorite ways to practice self care and self love. To offer you inspiration on your journey this V-day I want to share with you my top 5 favorite ways to romance myself. Take from them what you like and make them your own, get out, or stay in and romance yourself. I promise you’ll be in good company.
Treat yourself! Don’t wait on a special someone to do it for you. You want the dress, the shoes, the video game or painting in the thrift store window? Gifts can come from yourself. Although it might, this doesn’t have to mean a 5th avenue shopping spree that breaks the bank. Sometimes it can be something small that brings you an abundance joy. For me it’s sometimes as small as a fresh juice from the juice bar down the street or a bite size dessert from the market and more times than not it’s, you guessed it, new lingerie.
The Scylla bodysuit
Take yourself to the movies, rock climbing, a museum walk (my favorite) or just a stroll through Central Park. A lot of times we let the weight of work, school and the ongoing pandemic and other thrills of life weigh down to where we don’t have the time, money, energy etc. to enjoy the activities that we love. Taking it a step deeper, this point is extra important when we’re talking about trying new activities that we have “always wanted to do.” Listen closely because this is important! We only have so many tomorrow’s, so if you always wanted to learn a new skill, try a dance class, karate class, learn a craft, or whatever it is, these are optimal spaces where you can gain a deeper connection with yourself while spreading your wings into new territory. Growth. You only have everything to gain from investing in yourself and stepping out trying something new.
Oooh this is a good one. Make a reservation and go! I bet you have 50 restaurants saved on your google maps app filed under “want to try.” If you aren’t in a long term relationship, you're gonna have to kiss a lot of frogs to make it through your list if you wait for a date to visit them. Spare yourself the frogs and reserve a table for one. You might feel scared and intimidated at first, but I promise once you relax and enjoy your meal you will feel like a courageous and independent badass. Trust me on this one.
The Lyra bra and garter
A break from the noise dates
Sometimes I like to sit in silence, away from the tv, away from the constant buzzing of my phone and give myself a safe space to be alone with my thoughts. I get rid of all the distractions and constant external stimulation to hear myself think. These are great times for journaling if that's your thing. There's an added benefit when you’re able to get outdoors, like in a park or by the ocean. Being outdoors and in nature will give you space to silence the noise and offer you a new perspective that you can't see when you have 4 walls surrounding you.
All of the mental and emotional self care we invest into ourselves is worth its weight in gold plus tax, plus interest. To support each of those efforts the physical craves attention too, since we know that they are all connected. Pampering can be a spa day, massages, facials, mani/pedis, the whole nine. It can also be a neighborhood jog, or a yoga lesson, something to get your blood flowing and to release some dopamine. Whether you go out to a spa or salon for them or stay home enjoying a DIY spa day with a homemade avocado mask, you are going to reap the benefits of rounding out your self care portfolio.
The Fringe Benefits bralette and overt bikini
In short, don’t wait for a special occasion to spoil yourself, you are the special occasion. Don’t even wait on V-day. Carve out the time to romance yourself and feel no guilt about it because of all the relationships that you will flow in and out of, the relationship you have with yourself is the absolute most important of your life and will inform how you show up in each of your other relationships. These are little steps along the way where we can show ourselves love and affection that will inform your confidence throughout every aspect of your existence.
Jonalyn is the Customer Engagement Coordinator for Thistle and Spire and has been with the company since 2019.
You can learn more about Jonalyn, by following her on Instagram.