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  • Writer's pictureMike and Glenn

The Beauty of Sobriety

Kintsugi is the Japanese art of putting broken pottery pieces back together, increasing their beauty and value by sealing imperfections and flaws with lacings of melted gold. The uniquely decorated details accentuate the defect and symbolize the power of genuine rehabilitation.

Some would say we were shattered by our poor decisions and a disease-like condition that drove us to a state of devastation and despair. Busted, we were at the brink of the trash heap when we conceded the fight - This is where the destruction ended, and the construction began.

Chunks of our existence had to be reassembled, delicately re-placed using the bonds of honesty, hope, faith, courage, integrity, willingness, humility, love, responsibility, discipline, spirituality, and service. Patiently and painstakingly taking the time required to get the pieces right, we assemble a better, more valuable life.

The process is clumsy and uncomfortable. We take direction from those who have rebuilt their lives, absorbing and executing on their advice and example. We trust in the vision we seek to build. We accept that some portions will never fit as cleanly as the original design. We remind ourselves that the best we can do is to get the new piece as it is.

Sometimes we fumble fragments in our quest to repair them, causing additional damage. These setbacks are expected as we are undertaking a strenuous exercise.

Those on the outside watching us build may be skeptical and may not even care for the sculpture in transformation. The piece itself has no capability to appreciate. It is the artist that understands the art.

The pottery will be used as a utility, subject to wear and tear. Thus, we will never complete the project. There is no dismay in this understanding as the process becomes our purpose, not the finished product.

Ideally, we would have kept the pottery intact and in its original condition. Fortunately, we have been given the gift of creating a more robust, beautiful existence—a life enhanced in strength and value.

Mostly, we are grateful for the valued pieces of our life that have allowed us to glue back and rebuild, forgiving our pasts while accepting our present.

We are living proof that reconstruction allows for improvement to the original creation. We tend to over-protect what was once broken. We value it more because of the effort we put into it.

We don't know where the reader of this post sits; If broken, please know that rehabilitation is possible. Instructions and instructors are available all around us. See our Resource Room to begin the process that promises to be fulfilling. To those actively reconstructing, enjoy the exercise the best you can, remembering that it won't always be easy, but we achieve peace through it.

May we all be more substantial and more valuable in all of our tomorrow's.


Thoughts and ideas for this blog post were taken and built upon from a podcast #126 "We are Kintsugi: Special Guest Julianna"… the episode dropped on 8/23/2023 Click here to hear the podcast.

Photo by Motoki Tonn on Unsplash


Alcoholics Anonymous and AA are registered trademarks of Alcoholics World Service. Inc. References to AA, the 12 steps, and 12 traditions does not mean that AA has reviewed or approved the contents of this publication nor that AA agrees with the views expressed herein. This publication is intended to support personal growth and should not be considered a substitute for healthcare professionals' advice. The author’s advice and viewpoints are their own.


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Oct 13, 2023

Great reference on how our lives were before sobriety with the broken pottery bowl. You guys crush it on the true value of your content and shares. Being able and willing to be put back together shows that we are working within the solution and removing ourselves from being the "problem".


Dr. John Deitche
Dr. John Deitche
Aug 24, 2023

How true. Once broken and repaired, if dropped again is even more of a puzzle. Thank you for the insight.

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