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Putting yourself back together

I’ve written before about how matrescence is like kintsugi: having a baby shatters you and the living you do after you have the baby puts you back together with shiny gold holding you together. But I haven’t articulated how putting yourself together is a long process.

Meg at Sew Liberated writes today about the twelve year project of making a skirt that she started when she was a new mom and only finished recently. Her oldest is 12.

Part of the kintsugi of matrescence is finding the pieces. I misplaced a lot of mine in the time after my son was born. He’ll be 5 in October. I’m gathering the pieces but a lot of them are still in a pile waiting to be stuck to the me that’s here now.

I find them in moments when I’m doing something and suddenly feel more me than I have in a very long time. When I stay up late coding. When I watched the Stephen Sondheim 90th birthday concert. When I talk through a research design with colleagues.

Putting yourself together is an ongoing project; we’re each a big Katamari ball of experiences and interests. (How’s that for a dated reference? Have I mentioned I’m 40?) In my case, at least, that ball got blown apart. It’s encouraging to find all its bits are still within reach.

Kimberly Hirsh, PhD @kimberlyhirsh