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  • Bent Not Broken Trauma Counselling Project

How To Recover From A Traumatic Birth Part 8 - Think Kintsugi

Learn to think Kintsugi.

The Japanese have an art form called 'Kintsugi'

It means 'to repair with gold'.

The Japanese believe that a broken bowl or piece of pottery should be repaired with gold and made whole again. That in the very gold that holds the cracks and repairs together there is strength. That the object can be revered and valued because its flaws make it beautiful. That there is perfection in imperfection.

An old pottery bowl on a plain background. The bowl is made of thick, dark pottery and looks old. It has gold infilling where it was broken and has been put back together. It's strangely beautiful for an object that is not conventionally pretty.

Humans - we are Kintsugi; we are made beautiful and strong by the things that happen to us, even the terrible things. We have a choice when bad things happen in our lives. Whilst we cannot always stop or control those things, we can choose to put ourselves back together and be strong and beautiful despite what's happened.

It's hard work emotionally to do this. We have to accept we will not come through it and be the same person we were before. Instead, we will emerge with our flaws and breaks filled with gold and we will change into something imperfect and flawed yet stronger and more beautiful because of all we have been through.

That, to me, is what resolving trauma is all about.

Strong, imperfect, repaired but not broken.

Just human.

This picture shows a naked woman from the waist up. She has her hair in bunches at the nape of her neck and her face is raised towards the sky. She has lines of gold on her face and body representing that humans can also be Kintsugi. We can be broken and then repaired. We are beautiful and strong because of our flaws and imperfections.

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