I collected all the important looking pieces and swept the flakes into the bin. I scratched around and found one tiny tube of Super Glue ( terrifying stuff) and started to separate the pieces of the three bowls.
I started from the bottom and worked upwards. The base. The foundation. Where it all started. Fix that and the other pieces should fit perfectly. Easier said than done.
The panic of feeling I was going to be attached to a Cyprian bowl for the rest of my life and my nails being glued to my fingertips forever was real.
I glued together one piece at a time. Until the last piece. That darned last piece! It had to be filed down with my favourite kitchen knife to fit in to the only gap left.
Perfectionists would say, “You should have thrown the pieces in the bin.” Well, I am far from being a perfectionist and these bowls are important to me. I’m glad I took the time (the best part of a whole morning) and effort to put them together again. No, they aren’t in the Fujisuzukikama (?) league with gold paint filling in the cracks but they are back to being MY bowls. (I have considered filling the cracks with gold glitter glue to make them look valuable but that may make them look cheap. Just sticking to down-to-earth real).
Ok, so… back to relationships. Are they worth fixing or not? If they can be fixed, why not? Should we ignore the pain of the brokenness or should we face it full on and learn from what happened? What happens if we try our best to fix things and we draw a blank? What if I want to fix it and the other would prefer to discard it?
I make the call. I call out my bravery and courage to face the truth of what happened. No matter how painful, I need to do it if I want to grow. I need to learn how to speak the truth lovingly and to hear it with humility and a heart that wants to learn. When words gets angry, I try to hear if there’s any truth in them. Just get to the truth. It sets us free, but hurts like hell in the process.
Yes, I can overlook an offence. Yes, I can forgive and try to forget but it’s easier when I know exactly what I am forgiving and what exactly I am needing to forget. If I am living in Cuckoo Land only knowing what happened from my perspective, I am living in Cuckoo Land. If I am asked the question, I will present only what I know. If you don’t tell me how you saw things, how can I know? I gave up trying to read minds a long time ago.
So, yes, sometimes we can just, “Let it Go.” But we can also talk. We can have a deep, loving, truthful conversation doing our best to fix whatever is broken. If we are mature and wise, we won’t add pain to the pain. If it’s important to us, we will make the effort. We will build up, encourage, put our relationship together, piece by piece even if it takes a lifetime.
My bowls didn’t just fly off the shelf. I did that. I take full responsibility. Gone are the days when I blamed the pavement for my fall. (“Naughty pavement!”) There was no Cat in the Hat to pick up the mess I made. I had to do it all myself.
The bowls are fixed. They will never hold water, but instead of looking pretty on my shelf, they are now homes for my baby cacti. No extra drainage needed. Pretty, but no longer perfect.
There are cracks and small pieces and flakes missing, but in the words of my mother, “No-one is going to stop a galloping horse to look for those.”
Everyone I know carries brokenness. We are fragile but we are free. Free to fix things or to pretend nothing has been broken.
If it’s important to us we will pick up the pieces, piece by painful piece.
(I love seeing little daisies or greenery pushing out from cracks in a road or stone wall. How robust. How determined. How courageous.)