This I Believe

Jon - chicago, Illinois
Entered on April 24, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: love

I believe that love is earned. Love is a special relationship that exists between two people that care deeply for each other, like parent to its child. Since feelings are affected by people actions, it’s clear that love, being a feeling, can vary with the happiness between you and that selected individual. So things are in real life, because if love was constant, love would hold no meaning.

Everyday, my mother says the same things before I leave for school and when I get to bed. “I love you. Be careful.” Or, “I love you. Goodnight.” This is a daily tradition between us. Now, some people feel that this is just a common, ordinary thing, like “parents always say they love their kids. It’s normal.” But I feel that many people don’t realize that you have to earn that love from your parents.

When I was in 6th grade, my parents were thoroughly unimpressed with my school. They were planning to transfer me out of the school, but it would be based on how my new school would like my grades. They reminded me so often to keep check on my grades, but I never put in the effort. I would tell them, “Don’t worry, I’m doing fine.” But when I found I had obtained a D in one of my classes, I knew something horrible was going to happen.

My sister and I gave our grades to our parents, and that night was probably one of the worst of my life. As the screaming continued, my sister and I found ourselves in the middle of a choice. Our parents were upset with our grades, but more disappointed in that we got these grades after being warned to keep them up. While people assume parents have to love their kids, I was dead sure that my parents were not to keen in knowing I lived in the same house.

In the end, we went to a summer school program to boost our credit in our new school, and were accepted for the next scholastic year. But it wasn’t until then that I saw that love isn’t just given, we must earn it. My parents felt that I had the ability to get into the new school without a hitch, but I created a problem where it wasn’t necessary. My sister and I betrayed them by not putting forth our best effort, and they expressed that in their reactions and disappointment. This was my clear answer to why love must be earned.