Sunday, January 5, 2014

The Beauty of Being Broken

A month or so ago Joey knocked a "Great" souvenir rock piece off of my bookshelf and it fell down onto my desk and smashed the shade to my banker's lamp...the banker's lamp that was my first desk lamp as a child that I got around the age of 11. My husband has this knack for breaking things from my past or childhood that are dear to my heart, my firsts or favorites. Perhaps he's to teach me lessons in non-attachment?  I've just had to deal with it, of course, because once something is broken there really is no going back.  Sometimes you can repair it, sure, but it is forever structurally changed even if.  For better or worse? As cool as it would have been to glue the green shade, it was busted beyond repair; glue was not an option. But sometimes when things are broken you have a great opportunity to change something in the object's life story; when we are forced to put ourselves back together we can make our mortar golden.

The Japanese have a term for the beauty found in the imperfections of things. "Kintsugi" is a word for the art of fixing ceramics with solid gold, or gold-like material. The word means "golden joinery" and when a vessel is repaired in this way it is thought to be more valued than before it was fractured. I think that is a beautiful metaphor for all of our broken hearts. Something that has been damaged or is flawed is more beautiful because of this. You just have to see it that way. In a sense, the broken ceramic has wisdom. It is wise to the way of the world and its wounds are its wealth.

Unfortunately my lamp shade couldn't be joined with gold, but the lamp itself could be salvaged by simply getting another shade. While being broken, I had the choice to either replace it with a similar green one or change it while I had the chance and go with an amber colored shade.

Sometimes when you have to fix something it is a good chance to make changes and sometimes when things are fixed, the flaws don't look so bad. Just because something is broken doesn't mean it should be valued any less. If we view ourselves like ceramics, we would find more worth in our imperfections. Hardship builds character. Flaw is fashionable. Broken is beautiful.
So, I went with the amber shade and I think that my lamp has taken on a whole new personality. It's the same lamp, but a different shade; it's the same light, but a different color. I could be sad that the lamp I had no longer exists, or that parts of me are broken but instead, I'm actually pretty psyched because this one matches its surroundings better, these glued pieces do me justice. If I never broke, I never would have changed. I wouldn't have my golden fracture lines had I not at some point cracked. That makes me more beautiful...and wise.  Sometimes, like the lamp, to find your true color and are better off broken.

No comments:

Post a Comment