“I love you.” It’s serious business to tell someone that, or in my own opinion, it should be the most meaningful thing that you ever say to someone.
When I love someone, I love them for life. Part of me will always love them, so when I say it, it’s sacred and we’re bonded, whether the other person wants that or not. Even when a person leaves my life, whether they’ve gone home to God, or I’ve pushed them out the door, or whether they’ve gone of their own accord; part of me will always love them. I don’t stop loving people. Prime example of this? My former step dad- I despise him, but a part of me will always love him.
I don’t give those words to people very often, because those words are for life. I’ve often faltered in the way that I love people, and I’m hesitant to say it sometimes because once it’s out there, it is a lot of pain and heartbreak when I don’t own up to responsibility of the words. It’s not automatically reciprocal, and I won’t say it unless I mean it. I LIKE a lot of things, and I adore a lot of people, but I love a select few.
There are four Greek words for love and they have their own distinct meaning: agápe, éros, philía, and storgē. My understanding of these words is limited, but I will do my best to explain them.
- agápe- the unconditional love, the affectionate love; this love gives and expects nothing in return
- éros - is passionate and intense love, and the appreciation of beauty from within a person, but does not always have to be physical
- philía - is affectionate regard or friendship, this love has give and take, and is mostly the love I feel for other people. This love requires virtue, equality and familiarity
- storgē - is natural affection, and is almost exclusively reserved to describe affectionate love between family members
I spend a lot of time thinking about love, and it’s good to know that the love I feel for a select few is not the same kind of love across the board. I still think each kind of love has a weighty implication that I will not take lightly or use in a casual sense. Love means different things, and yet in English it is all lumped under the title of “Love.” Without much diversification, to express that we feel something greater than to like or adore something, we default to love. Love is a sacred word, and yet it gets thrown out there so often. I agree that when you love someone, you should love freely and with reckless abandon, but I feel as though we’re careless in the way we use it. I apologize in advance for rolling my eyes every time I hear it, but its meaning is weakened each time it’s used without your full intention behind it, and pretty soon it won’t mean much at all.