My marriage fell apart piece by piece. It was singularly the saddest experience of my life and left me feeling broken in a way that is indescribable. Shattered.
I had walked down the aisle blissfully naive. Hopeful. Whole. Perfect. Full of expectations and dreams for the future: a long happy life ahead filled with babies, a beautiful home, and treasured memories.
Often, life does not play out as we imagine. I ignorantly believed at 32 that marriage meant happily ever after. And so I was woefully unprepared for the destruction that lay ahead.
Every late night arrival home, every unanswered phone call, every ignored text, every found receipt, every lie just broke another piece of my heart and chipped away at my marriage and my being.
Eight years and two beautiful babies later, my marriage was ruined, the life I wanted destroyed, and my heart in splinters.
I cried…a lot, and I was so fearful that I would never stop. That I would never recover. That I had been irrevocably altered. That I would never feel hopeful, whole, or perfect again. I cried for what I had lost. I cried for who I had become. And I cried for the me I once was.
In the middle of my worst days, I read a Facebook post about kintsugi, the Japanese art of repairing shattered porcelain with liquid gold. In some cases, repairs take months, but the scars ultimately give the repaired object a higher value.
And I have come to see the wisdom in this Japanese art. Yes, I was shattered and defeated for a very long time. I am not the naive 32 year old I once was who believed a life of perfect bliss lay ahead.
Now, I picture my splintered heart held together by hundreds of threads of gold. I am imperfect, but I am not broken anymore. And beauty lies in both my fragility and my strength as I begin to repair my heart and rebuild a new, different life.