**originally published on elephant journal.
Lately, it seems that all the cracks in my heart are widening and what was once so neatly put together, is now a little broken.
Well, maybe it’s not broken. Maybe, it’s breaking open.
Regardless, right now, there are pieces, many pieces, and all of them require attention.
Some are loving. Some are screaming. Some are crying. Some have drawn their swords in preparation for battle. Some stare with child-like wonder. Some carry the weight of perfection. And, others, well, they’re just tucked away in corners, contentedly dancing to deep techno music.
We all have our own pieces. These are mine.
But, the one thing our big, beautiful, fragile hearts and their pieces have in common with each other, is that they are undeniably essential parts of who we are and to ignore any part of them is to disrespect our uniqueness, passions and power.
Casting certain ones aside because they are undesirable takes away a little bit of love and causes feelings of shame, inferiority and judgment.
And, where is the wisdom and compassion in that?
Where is the unconditional love?
Perhaps, it’s a natural occurrence for our hearts to reveal their “brokenness.”
This fracturing gives us an opportunity to look inside and touch, taste and feel (really feel) the deep crevices within; the different parts of our bodies, minds and spirits that make us whole.
Maybe, it’s our inner truth calling us back to our warrior spirits by inviting us to dive a little deeper; stare a bit longer; cry a bit harder; and ultimately, find a way to meld, bend, create ourselves into the unique and imperfect beings that we are.
It’s not always pretty or comfortable (as evidenced by my recent puffy, morning eyes) but it is real, raw and teaches us to love as warriors, with grace and courage.
It is what we need to grow and stumble and live and love and be and connect and hurt and feel and shine…always shine.
Being in the world with this depth of self-knowledge and acceptance not only empowers us as individuals but it makes us better citizens. It reminds us that we matter and our actions are important because we are whole and our voices come from a place of strength.
When we explore these broken parts of ourselves, it is not about finding ways to fix them.
There is nothing to fix.
We are as beautiful in our breaking as we are in our wholeness.
It’s about taking our pieces, really seeing them and opening ourselves to the possibilities that exist within us.
It’s about looking at our spirits and sculpting and creating the truth of who we are from the unique parts of who we be.
It’s about acceptance, fear, insecurity, connection, beauty, sadness, courage, weakness, joy, pain and love.
All of it.
And, it’s a beautiful perfect mess.