When We Feel Broken

Jan 12, 2022

Sometimes, I think we get the idea that we can only help people if we have it all together, and actually the very opposite is true! What you’ve been through in your life and what you heal from is the secret sauce that helps others have the courage to heal!

When I listened to my heart that morning on that retreat I wrote about in Utah, I decided to take my personal power back. I began to desire that the things that happened to me over the years would some- how, in some way, have value to me and to others. Was there some way I could take the horror of my past and turn it into something redeeming, something beautiful, like the kintsugi bowl art? Could I possibly see it as a gift to be used to help other women? The answer was YES!

The Legend of Kintsugi

A Japanese legend tells the story of a mighty shogun warrior who broke his favorite tea bowl and sent it away for repairs. When he received it back, the bowl was held together by unsightly metal staples. Although he could still use it, the shogun was disappointed. Still hoping to restore his beloved bowl to its former beauty, he asked a craftsman to find a more elegant solution.

The craftsman wanted to try a new technique, something that would add to the beauty of the bowl as well as repair it. So, he mended every crack in the bowl with a lacquer resin mixed with gold. When the tea bowl was returned to the shogun, there were streaks of gold running through it, telling its story, and—the warrior thought—adding to its value and beauty. This method of repair became known as kintsugi.

Kintsugi, which roughly translates to “golden joinery,” is the Japanese philosophy that the value of an object is not in its beauty, but in its imperfections, and that these imperfections are something to celebrate, not hide.

(from: Youniquefoundation.org)

We are so beautiful in our imperfections and in our brokenness. We aren’t broken beyond repair when we have past pain. We, like the kintsugi art bowl, become masterpieces as we do our work of healing. Our healing journey is like the gold that puts our lives back together. Because being healed, we are more valuable to ourselves and other people with whom we may inspire.”

(Adapted from: You’re Not Broken, Shifting Anxiety and Fear to Strength and Empowerment, by Cindy Jesse)