Updated: Nov 18, 2021
There is an upside, though sometimes far in the distance, in being shattered, broken open and raw…
One fall afternoon, while taking a walk in my neighborhood, I was on my phone talking with a friend. It was our first conversation after many months of not hearing from her. She had been going through a personal crisis. And as she shared her grief, I found myself silent, struggling to find the right words to comfort her. To be there to listen was one thing, but it felt like I was letting her down by not finding a way to be consoling.
It was at that very moment, when my eyes stumbled upon a heart-shaped leaf, laying there at my feet, shattered into pieces on the cold concrete, but surprisingly, holding its shape almost perfectly.
This broken beauty and its precise synchronicity was startling. In that moment, I may not have been able to offer the right words to someone I cared for, but somehow right before my feet, the answer was strikingly clear.
How do we put our broken pieces back together again when we’re faced with heartbreak? What I’ve come to learn is this: within that space of being shattered, there lies an opening, where the light begins to break through the cracks, and our hidden parts begin to surface.
It is imperative to examine and engage with those hidden, often painful, and dark aspects of ourselves. Because it is there in our vulnerability, where the light begins to brighten yet another aspect of ourselves we can’t easily see when we’re in the thick of it.
One day we suddenly discover that it is within that very heartbreak, where we are able to tap into a set of tools we never thought would deliver our strength, our sense of resilience, and, ultimately, our ability to turn our pain into something so much more powerful and life-changing.
If we know this truth, that the magical order of life exists, like the rising and setting of the sun and the changing of every season, then to be broken is also a natural part of this ride called life.
So, maybe we can then trust in knowing that everyone of us, at one point or another, requires a breaking and then soon enough, a blooming into a newer and better version of ourselves.
There is an upside in being broken.
We may get shattered into a million pieces and even still end up with a few broken parts, but just like the shattered leaf, there lies the truth in knowing we can keep our shape and be whole, again.