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.

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Kimberly Hirsh, PhD @KimberlyHirsh
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We must acknowledge that much of what we know of this country today, including its culture, economic growth, and development throughout history and across time, has been made possible by the labor of enslaved Africans and their ascendants who suffered the horror of the transatlantic trafficking of their people, chattel slavery, and Jim Crow. We are indebted to their labor and their sacrifice, and we must acknowledge the tremors of that violence throughout the generations and the resulting impact that can still be felt and witnessed today. I thank Dr. Terah ‘TJ’ Stewart for the text of this labor acknowledgement.