You Are A Person, Not A Thing – Why One Must Never Use The Word ‘BROKEN’

Published on 7 Feb 2017 . 3 min read

‘You might be broken but I will still love you’.

‘I feel so broken, I don’t think I will ever find someone.’

‘Look at her, she’s a pile of broken mess.’

‘After the way I broke, I never thought I could pick myself up.’

Do these sentences sound familiar? If they do, then guess what, these aren’t quotes from anywhere specific. They sound familiar because we are all just so used to listening to, reading, and saying the word ‘broken’ with relation to people – which also includes using it for ourselves. There is a great deal of romanticism attached to using this word in this manner. While what it conveys is something very essentially “human”, there is nevertheless a need to ensure that we are careful about our own perception of the word.

When we extend to using this word for ourselves, or people around us, in some way we attribute an inanimate feature to the particular person. Things break, and yes, using it as a perfectly valid metaphor, people break too. Circumstances of our life are constantly breaking and making us, or rather, as I would prefer to say, unmaking and making us. But probably, there could be some merit in trying not to use this word as often as we do. Or, in trying not to glorify this metaphor as much as we do.

But if you have to use this word to describe how you currently feel, let the succeeding thought be one that reminds you that no, you aren’t broken. That in fact, it is not possible for you to break. Because remember, you are a human and not a thing. And one of the superpowers each one of us possesses is resilience. We may not know until there comes a situation where we have no other option but to be resilient and it surprises us. But there is value in letting yourself be guided to that moment of revelation with patience and perseverance.

How we perceive our suffering, is integral to how we will heal. If we let ourselves feel like the adversity we faced is going to take a toll on us and we will never be the same – our path to healing will be paved with many challenges. A lot of this, will of course make sense only in retrospect – once you have endured the cycle of hurt and are on your way to healing. And yes, it is always easier said than done.

While grief is an intensely private emotion, and no one can feel your grief the way you do, what you allow your grief to make you is going to be your story. Whether you allow your grief to say the words “I broke”, or “I am broken”, or whether you take charge and convert your story into “Yes, it happened, but I didn’t break. I made it. Because I am a person and not a thing, and I am not so fragile as to break every time I fall”, is completely up to you. Once you have accomplished the latter, the magic you will feel unfolding in everything related to you is something that is worth striving for.

So what is your story of survival?


Shreeradha Mishra
Shreeradha is a passionate child rights professional and a freelance writer. Most of the other times, she is traveling, photographing, baking or eating

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