Hyrule's True Courage and Meaning of Home

POSTED ON:  November 2, 2023 

by: TaylorPlayz

Author’s Note: This blog post contains some major story spoilers (mainly two dragon tear memories from later on in the game) and a small piece of the ending for The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. Also, a strong trigger warning is in effect for mentions of manipulation as well as family abuse. If you’re struggling with mental health or any type of abuse (physical, mental, etc), please know that there is professional help available. In the US, if you are experiencing a mental health crisis and are in need of immediate help, you can contact the National Crisis Prevention Hotline to speak to a professional by dialing or texting 988.

The Zelda game series holds an extremely special place in my heart. This is true for most of the games themselves, but also the various lessons that we take from the series. The Legend of Zelda series makes me thankful for the true courage I had to face real life challenges and ultimately allowed me to find my true meaning of home.

True courage is displayed when someone faces danger even if they are afraid of the danger. For those who do not know much about me, I struggled a lot to find my courage during the pandemic when it started in March 2020. I went through various changes (mainly my vision being restored), but I also went through incredible growth. This was to not only regain my courage, but to also prove that I can thrive without my mother controlling my every move.

I was living with my mother during the pandemic and, while the photos with me and her may show a strong bond between mother and daughter (I will not share them here for privacy reasons), my life was not as pleasant outside those pictures. To put it in simple terms, my mother led me down a dark path. She manipulated me into believing things that were not at all true. For example, I caught her once saying to another family member that I would never become a thriving adult and I would always live with her. The icing on the cake, however, was that she took away my freedom. 

However, just as I thought my life with my mother was about to get worse, it got better.

Fast forward to late August of 2020 and my mother discovers that I was given a phone in secret from my father. At this point, I had gathered enough courage to say something to my mother, but I had to time it and make sure it was the right moment before I made my move. I waited for her to stop yelling at me for having a phone in the first place (with internet access which was an absolute “no” for her) before I simply told her that I was done living with her and that I decided right then and there to move in with my father full time. 

My mother was, understandably, shocked at my decision. She started telling me that she always wanted to see me grow up to be a responsible adult, but I argued back saying that she was the one who manipulated me and led me down a dark path. While I will not go any further here, I will say that I am grateful to be living with my father now because he allows me to do anything I want to do. Like the hero of Hyrule himself, I emerged victorious against my mother because I finally found my true courage.

When I got Tears of the Kingdom, I knew I was in for quite the treat. But I did not realize how much of it would relate to my real life experiences. In the seventh memory titled A Show of Fealty, Ganondorf (the leader of the Gerudo tribe) convinces King Rauru to accept the Gerudo tribe into the young kingdom of Hyrule. Rauru accepts this offer, but is completely aware that Ganondorf has an evil nature that even Zelda notices. However, Rauru tells Zelda not to worry about Ganondorf as if to have Zelda believe that there is nothing wrong. The same is true with me except I was always worried about how my mother treated me.

Ganondorf and the Gerudo Tribe during the memory A Show of Fealty from Tears of the Kingdom. Think of Ganondorf as my mother and the Gerudo tribe behind Ganondorf as people my mother successfully manipulated (therapists, friends and some family members).

Finding my true home was difficult. However, I noticed that in Tears of the Kingdom, Queen Sonia treats Zelda with the respect and dignity that I expect from others. In the eighth memory simply titled Zelda and Sonia, Queen Sonia and Zelda are talking about ways that Zelda can return home to her own era. Queen Sonia drops Link’s name mid-conversation by mistake which swiftly prompts King Rauru to be confused. Zelda goes on to explain to Rauru about Link. Both Queen Sonia and King Rauru are so fascinated with how Zelda talks about Link that they both agree to meet with the hero someday (spoiler alert: they eventually do, but not in the way you think). My true home is with my father, grandmother and my beloved dog named Milo. Both my father and grandmother have been supportive of me every step of the way. I could not be any more thankful to the family and friends that I’ve made since I left my mother.

My dog, Milo

Queen Sonia and Zelda having a heartfelt conversation about returning home during the memory Zelda and Sonia in Tears of the Kingdom.

Now that I am living with my father, I feel that where I am now is where I belong. I am grateful to be here. I have learned a lot of lessons about true courage and finding my true home. Perhaps the ending to Tears of the Kingdom is right after all when Zelda awakens: If we ever go searching for our heart’s desire, all we have to do is look in our own backyard because if the journey to find our heart’s desire is not there, we never lose what we are searching for to begin with. 

To put it more simply: No matter how far we go, whether in the real world or in Hyrule, there is no place like home.