People say that they love you all the time. Your friends say it. Your boyfriend or girlfriend says it. Your parents say it. Your government says it.
But, unless you're one of the fortunate few who everyone loves, very few mean it. I did some soul searching this evening, while i was waiting of the England v Turkey match to begin (England won 2-0, btw) and asked myself how many people really, truly loved me. Some refer to me as sayang, others have referred to me as darling, others still just call me "aiz", or affectionately "koko" (the chinese salutation for "elder brother") - among them i suppose there are a few who genuinely, literally and espressively, love me.
Who am i to love? I don't know. But after filtering through all the emotions in my mind, it seems the appropriate answer to that question should come from the persons in my life that are willing to love me for my evils and sacrifice for me despite of them. Of my evils, i have many and yet i find it amazing that those who love me accept me wholesale, and are always willing to burden themselves in my favour. Perhaps that is the most accurate description of love.
I can be a terrible son. My room is a mess, getting me to help in the house chores is a chore on its own. I'm almost like a leech that sucks the resources of my family while giving very little back in return. I live rent-free. My parents and sisters are moving out in May, and i've somehow managed to convince them to pay ME to live in this house alone (i'm "looking" after the house, i argue). I shout at my parents when they get irritating. I shout at my sisters whenever i feel like it. And yet, each of them love me because, through all that is bad about me as a son and a brother, none have let me down in my time of need. Countless times mom and dad have bailed me out, even when they could have easily said, "This is your problem, you sort it out", even when by helping me it means hardship onto them. Its hard to explain why they would do something like that, over and over again, over the years. The only explanation is love.
When i woman says she loves me, this will be the acid test. Its easy to profess love when the going is good and the times are rosy. Its easy to say "I love you" when there is so little on the line. Its a lot more difficult to love me, the asshole, me, the inconsiderate shithead. Its a lot more difficult to give up personal comforts and sacrifice for another person, especially when it would be so easy to turn a back and walk away saying, "Its not my problem, its yours".
The next time you say you love me, or any other person in your world, check yourself, look inside your depth of emotions and ask yourself who is more important, you or the person you say you love. Only one answer really means love.