FRAZIER: Being flawless is overrated, anyway
Published 4:00 am Saturday, October 29, 2022
It has been a crazy week; really a crazy month.
I have made two long road trips and finished the November/December edition of the Vicksburg Living Magazine. There have also been a couple of other goings-on that have kept my heart and mind occupied.
And during all these endeavors — some fun and some not so fun — I have tried to act, fulfill and respond perfectly.
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Perfect — it’s a word Merriam-Webster defines as being flawless, and Mary Poppins (practically perfect in every way) I’m not. I don’t know where in my life I grabbed hold of the notion that all things must be done to perfection, but I did and it oftentimes causes a lot of stress.
But ironically, after a month of going, going, going all while attempting to do everything just right, a book arrived in my mailbox, Tuesday, which has made me reconsider my skewed mindset.
The book, entitled “Life is Messy,” is written by Matthew Kelly, who I have now learned is a motivational speaker and founder of the Dynamic Catholic Institute.
My sister-in-law is Catholic. Therefore, I just assumed, since we often share with one another our struggles and joys, that she had sent me the book. But she claims she didn’t.
So, if she didn’t send it, I have taken this to mean someone from on high must have had a hand in it and is trying to convey a message to me. This thinking was solidified when I got to page 4 of the book.
There, Kelly jumps right into talking about perfection (see what I mean from on high) and in doing so describes to the reader the Japanese art form called kintsugi.
I had never heard of kintsugi, but as Kelly described it and then used it as an analogy as it pertains to perfection, his thought-provoking conclusion compelled me to rethink my obsession with the unattainable.
Kintsugi, Kelly said, is a form of ceramics and is used when something is broken, like a cup, a vase or a bowl.
With kintsugi, instead of the ceramic piece being tossed in the garbage, the broken pieces are glued back together with gold dust that has been sprinkled in the glue. Thus, Kelly said, “They don’t try to hide the cracks. They own them, honor them, even accentuate them by making them golden” — celebrating the crack as part of their story.
What an incredibly beautiful perspective and one that is so enlightening.
So much so, that while I ruminate on this art form of kintsugi, and contemplate how it differs from my need for perfection, I really think being flawless pales to being unique and one-of-a-kind.
And of course, who wouldn’t want to sparkle?