We don’t like feeling fragmented. It’s seen as a sign of health when we are feeling whole, when we have a sense of how we fit into our lives and how our lives fit into the bigger picture. We describe feeling scattered, chaotic, fragmented, and it is a negative thing. It is built into us to desire wholeness; and unity within ourselves and with others is, in fact, a great good. But what about when we become so driven toward this wholeness that we begin to make connections and meaning that aren’t there? What about when we NEED a story that makes sense to us, so badly that we will pick up pieces that were never ours, or let go of ones that are deeply part of us? What might it be to instead hold (only) our own pieces, and allow others to have theirs—even when it seems like their fragments are telling an entirely different story? We talked about deconstruction last week, and about having compassion for the one that is deconstructing (even—especially—when that person is our own self). In the process of taking apart what-was, we will inevitably hang on to some pieces, and let others go. What does it feel like when the pieces you have held onto look different from someone else’s in their own process? Do you wonder if you have the “right” pieces, even now? What would it be to trust the fragments as gifts that are for you? To hold them gently while also allowing for others’ fragments to look entirely different and tell a seemingly different story? What would it be to *listen* to those other pieces, without the defensiveness of needing it all to match up with your own experience? What if they are telling another side of the Great Story, and you just can’t fill in all the blanks right now? Can you let their pieces (and yours) be what they are? Gifts from Love, telling the bigger story we can’t always wrap our minds around? Can you honor the fragments you hold *and* the ones your spouse or friend or parents hold, knowing you (and they) are held yourself, in all your pieces?

Posted by Jamie Bonilla at 2023-01-17 14:30:30 UTC