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Loving the Broken Places

Loving the Broken Places

“The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.” -Ernest Hemingway

 

I am coming to love my brokenness, or at least I am coming to allow it the space it needs.  I am not ashamed of the fear that blinds me or makes it hard to sit still with the uncertainty and disappointment of the moment. I am learning to look at my weaknesses as a friend or at least a teacher.  It is freeing and challenging all at once and my mood is unpredictable, certainly not a measure of any truth.

This is the most challenging part of learning from the broken places.  It is so uncomfortable that we want to call it by name.  We want to identify it and place blame so appropriate measures can be taken.   I am trying to get over the urge to be rid of these tenuous places, where the cracks beneath my feet are clearly visible and there is no ground to hang onto.

Financial worries, relationship ills, work stalls all can easily trigger the broken spaces. Fixating on the story line is one way that the mind tries to get control of the situation. We repeat what happened, or at least our memory of what happened as though it can explain away the feelings of unworthiness, shame and despair that linger. Actually the story only cements the feelings into us.  It becomes hard to tell what is story line and what is real.

The discomfort with the unknowable is the most universal of all fears. It defines the human race and the myriad of dysfunctional behaviors that we employ to try to control, avoid and numb ourselves. Perhaps the most powerful shift that meditation practice has cultivated in me, is the skill to bear witness to the fear for moments at a time.

Learning how to pay attention to the storm cloud of fear and the associated feelings that climb aboard has shown me the truth to how little substance fear has. We make it real in all our methods of avoiding feeling it. But the feelings will just pass by if you can watch them and not connect them to any stories or identities.

This is a moment to moment occupation when I am in the worst of it. The familiar patterns of story, blame, avoidance feel like a warm blanket compared to the icy chill of just staying put in the storm. Try it a few times and then you realize how much strength we sacrifice to bad thinking habits. We are so much more worthy than that. It is a true practice of positivity and courage.

Read more: Self-Help, Spirit, Wendy's Positivity Quest, , , , ,

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Wendy Strgar

Wendy Strgar, founder and CEO of Good Clean Love, is a loveologist who writes and lectures on Making Love Sustainable, a green philosophy of relationships which teaches the importance of valuing the renewable resources of love, intimacy and family.  In her new book, Love that Works: A Guide to Enduring Intimacy,  she tackles the challenging issues of sustaining relationships and healthy intimacy with an authentic and disarming style and simple yet innovative adviceIt has been called "the essential guide for relationships."  The book is available on ebook.  Wendy has been married for 27 years to her husband, a psychiatrist, and lives with their four children ages 13- 22 in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

41 comments

+ add your own
7:17AM PDT on May 21, 2012

excellent, thanks

7:37AM PDT on Mar 29, 2012

Thank you...

5:15AM PST on Feb 16, 2012

Thanks for the article.

3:13PM PST on Feb 13, 2012

Thank you

6:08PM PST on Feb 8, 2012

I am broken, I am lost. I try to numb and it isn't working. I do not want to be alone.

9:57PM PST on Jan 25, 2012

This is deeply wise and beautifully written. Thank you.

7:49AM PST on Jan 24, 2012

thanks.
Blessed are the cracked, for it is they who let in the light.

2:11AM PST on Jan 24, 2012

Thanks.

10:38PM PST on Jan 23, 2012

“The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.” -Ernest Hemingway
Great quote.

7:43PM PST on Jan 23, 2012

Great article, thanks for sharing!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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Great people and animals all :)

Like the one about buttering the knife before slicing a cake.....will try that one for sure! Thanks…

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