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To Love, Or Not to Love?

Third period of the day, with my Shakespeare book in hand, and all that fluttered and stood out amidst the romantic ballads just read was one thing. Love. Now isn’t that a hefty word? From what I find, this word comes with such a variety of interpretations, that it’s almost hard to define anymore; not to say that it was ever that easy.
After having just read scene four of act two, I couldn’t help but wonder if Romeo was kidding me. There was no way he could’ve loved Juliet at his first glance, and then even have the untamable desire to marry her, after only just a couple of hours of knowing her. I figured that it must have been either what I call infatuation or “puppy dog love”. I’ve been in a relationship with a boyfriend of my own for 2 and a half months, and can’t even bring myself to say ‘I love you’ to him at this point in time. With this in mind, I simply let out a giggle and whispered, “Pssht, teenagers can’t fall in love.” I mean in all honesty, I think I hear the words, ‘I love you’ umpteen times a day, by young aspiring couples who’s relationships haven’t even amassed two weeks in duration. It is one thing to say ‘I love chocolate’, but it is quite another to tell another human being that you completely surrender yourself to them in every physical and emotional way possible. At least that’s what I believe “love” to be. Anything else in my book doesn’t count.
Little did I know, that when fifth period rolled around I would be asked by my very own Romeo, who was also reading the play, if I thought what we had was true love. Not to say that I find it unfathomable for teens to be in love, but I do certainly find some teens’ definitions of “love” to be misconstrued. I mean all I could think to myself was, ‘hey, I’m only fourteen, I’m not even sure that true love really exists, and even if it did, chances are I’m probably not going to find it at this age.’ Not having answered his question yet, unsure of how I really wanted to answer, still I responded, “I know how I feel, but the real question is, how do you feel”? I figured some deflecting tactics would work well in a sticky situation like this one. He followed up by explaining how he believes what we have is based off of love. So of course I followed that up by posing the question of, how he was able to come to that conclusion. I was flustered, and even a tad nervous. Had I once misspoke or unknowingly gave him a key sign indicating that, that was where my heart lay? How could we not be on the same page? He went onto explain in sweet balladic words of his own, of how his parents met when they were in eighth grade, dated, broke up after two weeks, then got back together after three days, and have been together everyday since. And after having shared this brief story, he flashed me a smile, and with eager eyes, analyzed my face for some sort of reassuring reaction, as though I could catch on that we may be on that very path.
As ridiculously cheesy as this may sound, that story touched me. It didn’t make me want to say ‘I love you’ to him a million times over, or even reconsider how I felt about him, but it did open my eyes. His story was evidence enough that teen love does exist, no matter how rare or unpromising it may be to me. To even make a connection to what we had in comparison to the affection and love his parents have, astounded me. I was able to conclude that even though it may have been easily thought for me to question Romeo’s feelings for Juliet at the Capulet’s party or even at her balcony, I realized that ‘who am I’ to question his feelings, or chemistry with Juliet? Everyday things are changing, the future is happening; the meanings of phrases are changing, evolving. I now suppose that even though I personally don’t feel that the three words of ‘I love you’ are effective or have much meaning after two weeks, I could be wrong. Love is a peculiar thing; an uncontrollable force and perhaps like the many interpretations, there are many forms. This Valentine’s day, I can’t be sure that I’ll be ready to say it to my beloved, but I certainly know that I won’t be so quick to judge or scoff, when I hear other couples say it in the future, -- like tomorrow at school.





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