What does it mean to feel broken, and how is it possible to rebuild? After sexual violence made her family feel broken, Dreen Lucky examines that brokenness with gentleness and an element of forgiveness towards herself. By incorporating kintsugi, the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with gold, Lucky explores the complex journey of building herself back up again in a way that acknowledges the break and even celebrates the time and care it took to recover.
Kintsugi; precious scars
by Dreen Lucky
My family’s tattered veil disintegrated. While onlookers stared at the exposed mess, I just stared at the pieces.
I was too young to understand how bad it was. To me it was normal; only the pieces were new. Everyone else saw how broken we all were.
A precious few tried to help, but no matter how hard someone tries, you can’t fix someone else unless they see they’re broken.
Growing up without value or worth teaches children to find ways to get parental approval. I created value in repairing the pieces to veil my family again.
My father hung himself in the entryway stairs to avoid prosecution for the crimes of assaulting his daughters for years.
My friend betrayed me and reported my story. After hours of interrogation, I followed suit. It was the first, and last time lawmen didn’t criminalize me for being a victim.
I couldn’t save anyone. The damage was done. I did the only thing I knew to do, I focused on building something with the pieces.
I was too immature to understand how damaged I was. I just kept building.
After a few tumultuous years of building my family, I became exhausted.
I saw what I built and wanted to build for myself. So, I petitioned and left at a very young age, with only ambition and unhealthy coping mechanisms.
The verbiage in my head said, you can accomplish anything, but if anything detracts that, it’s your fault and you have to fix that too.
I wound up building for everyone that attached to me. I bounced from broken pieces to broken everything else.
I subconsciously related to these broken pieces because I was broken too, and no one found value in me.
I set a price on my head and no one is silly enough to raise that price. People know a deal when they see one and they take advantage.
I allowed myself to be broken at the cheapest price for years. I would just pick up the pieces with all other surrounding pieces and build again.
It was three years ago when I finally saw what I built.
It was after my friend engaged in some of the most broken behavior I’d ever heard and caused his untimely death in my house.
I was finally old enough to understand why things were breaking around me. I realized, I got so good at building that I just expected to build everywhere. It was exhausting.
Tired of building for the world, I petitioned and left myself in the broken pieces.
I didn’t need to build for anyone anymore.
I just needed to be proud of what I built.
Kintsugi is a Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with gold. The broken pieces become more beautiful. Instead of losing worth or being discarded, it is built into something stronger and incredible. Kintsugi illustrates that recovering from devastation is more impressive than a flawless, untouched piece.
While breaking and picking up all the world’s pieces, I built a gorgeous piece I couldn’t even see. Butterflies can’t see the beauty of their wings and I couldn’t see the value in a brilliant gold artwork I built from my life.
The building ever ends because the piece is in use. Only improvement shows. No one sees the shattered pieces; they only see the complete picture.
This piece isn’t built to be beautiful; it was beautiful because it was broken.
It is resilient and useful because it was built again with beauty and precision only the once broken know how to do.
If you’re holding on to broken pieces, you’re not alone.
There is no level of broken that can’t be repaired if you build again.
Once you build back up, make sure to stand back and take a look at how beautiful your piece is. Notice the value and worth because most people won’t raise your value unless you raise your standards.
Our scars are precious. We are beautiful pieces of art.
Art is subjective and it can be whatever you want it to be; just like you.
Dreen Lucky is a teacher in Minnesota but she also volunteers for another charity with a similar mission. She has published hundreds of works across countless mediums over the last two decades. Currently, she owns an educational writing business, Daee Dreamz. She is the founder and Editor-in-chief of Entropy Island, an ezine launching in April. Her first fiction novel, The SparkGiver’s Experiment, is due out this year.