Lately it seems that in today’s world it has become easier for words or phrases to be stretched to their limits, ready to break if stretched too far and often losing meaning in the process. Phrases like “I Love You” that once meant something are tossed around without much thought about what it truly means to love someone; the good, the bad, and everything in between. We’ve somehow become a society in which we only find value in the words and not the meaning behind the words.
So we take the words and use them freely; we toss them about to either get what we want or because it seems like the logical thing to do at a certain point in a relationship. Many of us, however, forget that when it comes to love there is absolutely nothing logical about it. We forget that “I Love You” is a statement with power; something that may alter the way we perceive the world.
To love somebody is to be willing to do anything for someone else; it is selfless and pure with absolutely no strings attached. It is the willingness to make ourselves vulnerable in the most dangerous way possible and to trust someone else with this vulnerability. It is the complete acceptance of a person for everything he or she is or is not from the strengths to the shortcomings. To throw the phrase “I Love You” around is to make false proclamations of feelings that we do not truly have; to make a mockery of the connection that comes from loving someone.
For me personally, the phrase has great value; mostly because I didn’t grow up with people saying “I Love You.” In fact I had never even said the words in any serious manner until college after a friend of mine passed away; I began telling my close friends I loved them whenever we parted for a long time. Even after college, I said it to someone in the romantic sense for the first time six months ago and still, to this day, wholeheartedly mean it.
Sadly in today’s world it has become something that is overused and undervalued, stretching the phrase until it bends or breaks and loses its meaning in the process. Even I am guilty of this from time to time. My immediate reaction to someone saying “I Love You” is to say it back without considering what it means before uttering the words.
It has become so easy for us to just say it without ever thinking about the power behind it. Couples say it after a few weeks of dating, only to break up in the months following. Friends say it to other friends until one fight destroys the friendship permanently and neither party cares to fix it. Maybe it’s time that we take a moment to think about what it means to love someone before we openly declare it. Like so many other things, once it is said there is no taking it back. Maybe it’s time we put the value back in it before one day we wake up and the words themselves lose all meaning.
Until next time…stay classy.
- C.M. Berry
And a special thanks to the person who not only got the wheels of thought turning, but showed me what it means to love someone. Love you, boo. Always.
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