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Embracing Grief through Kintsugi

Grief is powerful and unavoidable.  It’s a natural universal emotion that we will all experience at some point in our lives.

A loss hurts so very deeply, only because we love so very deeply.  And that love doesn’t go away when our loved one goes away. 

Somehow, somewhere…in time, we learn to continue living, loving and transitioning that grief until it settles deep in our hearts. Although our broken heart will always bear the scars of our grief.

This is where Kintsugi comes into the picture.  I first learned about this art form while reading Dan Pink’s Power of Regret.

Kintsugi, is a traditional Japanese art form dating back to the 15th century and involves repairing broken pottery with a lacquer mixed with powdered gold, silver, or platinum. Instead of trying to hide the cracks and imperfections, Kintsugi accentuates them, turning what was once broken into something uniquely beautiful.

For me, Kintsugi is a visual representation of the jagged, crooked, painful lines of grief….broken, restored, beautiful, strong, whole again, and never forgotten.  

As we navigate the journey through grief a few lessons come to mind:

Acknowledge the Break   

Rumi says: You have to keep breaking your heart until it opens.

Acknowledging our heartbreak is the first step in the journey through grief toward hope.  

Celebrate the Beauty in the Break

Kintsugi artists don’t ignore cracks in the pottery or try to hide them. In fact, they celebrate the cracks, and create beauty within.

Allow the Break to Transform You

We all have this strength within to transform our heartbreak into something strong, beautiful and resilient.

It is this transformation that helps the days move forward, it recognizes that the sun will come out, that the birds will sing, and life will go on.   

We are Kintsugi.


Photo Courtsy of Unsplash
@Riho Kitagawa







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