We Are All Broken
I rarely get to meet new friends anymore these days.
Ever since I became a mom, I’ve placed all my energy into taking care of my family, work, this blog, and more recently, myself. I don’t have much time and energy to spare.
I don’t do girls night outs or even entertain at home. That’s my reality.
So I’m grateful for my family and old friends. Even though we all live in different parts of the country and the world, I know they’re just a phone call away.
I appreciate their company whenever I get the chance to travel and visit them or when they visit me. When we see each other, we can easily pick-up where we left off from the last time we saw or spoke to each other, as if no time has passed.
My family and old friends have given me love and support when I needed them most.
But blogging is slowly changing this reality for me. I’m starting to meet new friends – like-minded people who’s going through what I’m going through.
As I meet new blogging friends, I realized that although our stories may be different, it is our stories that brought us to where we are now.
I was also brought back to the time when my now old friends were once new to me. They too have their own stories to tell. And most of the time, those stories brought us together.
I’ve heard stories of growth, love, dreams and aspirations. But many of the stories also involved disappointments, failures, heartbreaks and even trauma.
It’s impossible to go through life unscathed. Life is not perfect, it will never be. From the moment we were born, every hurt, no matter how small, wounds us. As time passes, these wounds heal, but they still leave a scar.
Living a full life means having been broken.
So as I think about the stories of my friends, and my own too, I realized one thing, we are all broken.
But the eye-opening revelation for me is that even if we’re all broken, there’s beauty that can be found in the broken.
Finding Beauty in the Broken
Ashikaga Yoshimasa was a 15th century shogun (military ruler) in Japan known for being ineffective at his job.
When he was proclaimed as a shogun at the age of 13, the state of the countryside that he ruled over was in decline. During his rule, he was not able to improve the conditions. Starvation was widespread and there was economic turmoil.
But Yoshimasa brought a lot of beauty during his reign. He was an avid patron of the arts. He especially favored tea ceremonies and made it into an art form.
Legend has it that there was a time when Yoshimasa’s favorite tea bowl got broken. Instead of disposing it, he sent the tea bowl to China for repairs.
When the tea bowl was returned, it was repaired using metal staples. The metal staples were unattractive so local artisans tried to mend it. The best solution they found was to fill the cracks with lacquer sprinkled with gold dust.
This technique turned into the art of kintsugi. The featured image of this blog post is an example of such a work of art.
This bowl was thought to be broken once, but with the art of kintsugi, it was turned into something beautiful. Each crack and flaw has been illuminated, becoming the bowl’s saving grace.
Art truly imitates life through kintsugi.
Despite the imperfections within the stories that I’ve been told by my friends and even my loved ones, I was able to see their beauty by seeing the goodness in them. The more I listened to their stories, the more I see the beauty in them. In my eyes, they’re perfectly imperfect.
Like a kintsugi bowl, we can transform the hurts in our lives into something beautiful. Like gold dust, we can illuminate our bad experiences by seeing the goodness that came out of such experiences.
We can be a kintsugi artisan of our lives, if we are willing to give it a try.
We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly. – Sam Keen
BEST LINK PARTIES
Here is a list of the Best Link Parties where I link up!