The Masks of Life: Love From the heart?

used with permission from Kevin Dooley via

“Love is like a word written in Chinese; most of us don’t understand what it truly means.”
Written in 2014 by Rodney M., Age 16 — Zimbabwe


Love, what is it? Nobody really knows the exact meaning of this word for sure. The word love has been tossed around and misinterpreted for decades. Although most of us don’t completely comprehend this word, we still use it.

In literature when I don’t know what a word means the first thing I do is look for context clues. I look at the words around the word I don’t know and take a fairly educated guess at what it means. Why can’t we do that with this word? I mean when it all boils down, life is just one big story right?

Most children growing up are taught to love family no matter what. In my case I don’t know every single person in my family, but at family reunions I still tell everyone I love them and give everyone a big hug. So if I can say that I love family members who I don’t remember and haven’t seen since I was a baby and know it to be true, why can’t I know that I love someone who I’m constantly with and/or constantly talking to? Look at what’s around. I love my family because they’re my family, plain and simple. They will always be my family and they will always be there for me. But how do I know that’s love? In all honesty I don’t. I know that if I lost my family I wouldn’t know what to do with myself, that if something bad happened to my family I’d be really upset and probably an emotional wreck. If I can find someone who makes me feel that way, then to me I will have found someone of whom I love. Personal definitions could be different and that’s totally okay. People should love them for their own individual reasons regardless of why anyone else loves someone. So maybe the world hasn’t given an exact definition to the word love, but isn’t that a good thing?

Look at it this way: although it seems daunting, it’s one less thing that someone would have to worry about being decided for them; it’s one more decision a person gets to make for themselves; and it’s one more way that they can change themselves to suit their own image.