Kintsugi and PTSD
In Japan, the word Kintsugi translates to “golden rejoining”. A powerful translation for a powerful process.
It’s the ancient art of repairing what was once broken. A sacred practice that has been in effect since the 15th century.
In it’s essence and its intention, the practice of kintsugi is transforming broken pieces of ceramics to a resurrected masterpiece.
Paradoxically, The reassembled product, ,a culmination of broken pieces, result in a more beautiful image then it was in it’s original, scarless state.
Though the original form has forever been destroyed, through the recover process, the beauty is in resilience, not perfection.
Life is no different.
Ceramics are fragile and amazing all at once. People are too.
And just like ceramics, life can break apart, but is that a reason to stop living?
In fact, it’s reason to live with focused intent.
It seems impossible to recover from devastation, from loss, or from betrayal. The stories we construct about our lives take over as we convince ourselves we are not worthy of love, we don’t deserve recognition, we can’t be successful.
We are convinced we are “damaged goods”
Pain is inevitable. Things will always break. Similiarily, we all experience loss and pain.
Isn’t that the experience of life? To go through the good and the bad? The painful and the pleasureful? Love and heartbreak?
It’s about mending the wounds and putting the pieces back together. In doing so, we become strengthened during the process. It sucks, it hurts, it’s confusing, but without taking the risk to mend, you’re left with nothing but suffering with a handful of broken pieces.
Instead of tip-toeing over the broken shards, attempting to throw them away, or hiding them under the metaphorical furniture, we can choose to put them back together in a way that takes pride and shows the world what we have been through.
It’s having compassion for the shards, it’s curiously exploring how they fit.
We re-experience every broken piece as we engage in reconstruction. We learn through the shapes, positions, and feel in how they to come together.
When we recover to our original state, we hold our memories with the same process. We handle each fragment carefully so not to be cut, or broken further.
In the end, we ultimately must accept that we will have a new transformed self, this is done through the sacred and intimate process of re-experiencing the pieces of our humanity to make a greater, stronger, more whole self.
It’s being willing to reach out to help. It’s being open to trying new things.
it’s knowing how we are deeply afraid to revisit our painful memories, and choosing to have the courage to find the self we have once lost.
We are a conduit, a thriving testimony of life, a proud representation of the human experience.
And we do this with pride, we do this with our scars.