Making Broken Hearts Whole Again…For All of Us

Dear Reader:

I saw an article that touched my heart a couple of weeks ago…so I stored it up among my “favorites” to bring out on a special day…and Valentines is that special day…the day of hearts. The day of taking heart that we are all stronger than we think and more united than we believe. And on “heart day” it would be wonderful to see our core values shared together again.

Here is the article I saved for us all to read and contemplate and pray for a day of unification, not in some foreign country…but right here. Americans together forever…by asking ourselves one question…”What breaks your heart?”

“What Breaks Your Heart”

The other day, I had the chance to speak with Architect of Change, Dr. Tererai Trent, about her new book, “The Awakened Woman.” In addition to being an author, Tererai is an internationally renowned scholar and humanitarian whose voice and incredible life story have inspired millions, myself included.

After Tererai and I finished our Architects of Change interview, she turned to me and asked a very simple, but profound question.

“Maria,” she said, looking me dead in the eye. “What breaks your heart?”

I stared at her for a bit, knowing that this was a big question to be asked. I knew this was not a question for my mind to answer. This was one for my heart and soul.

“What does your heart ache for?” Tererai asked, expanding upon her initial question. “What do you envision for the world, and for yourself?”

Over the years, I have interviewed many Architects of Change. I was also raised by two formidable Architects of Change. All of these individuals, in their own way, have asked themselves this kind of question — a question that has led them to their life’s purpose. But, no one I’ve met has ever posed it to me quite the way that Tererai did.

What breaks your heart? What does your soul long for? And, how is that connected to how you are living your life now?

I love this question because it’s made me think about my passion and purpose in a whole new way. I wanted to share it with you today because I believe this is a question that applies to all of us. And, I also believe that the answer lies deep within each and every one of us.

I deeply believe that each of us is here to move humanity forward. I deeply believe that each and every one of us longs to be of service to others, and also to live our lives in a way that matters.

“What breaks your heart?” is about the best question I’ve ever heard to help you get closer to your soul’s longing and closer to your life’s passion and purpose. But, I think before you can even answer that question, you must first acknowledge that your heart is broken, or has been broken.

I think we often think heartbreak is the result of lost love. Of course, it can be, but heartbreak also happens when what you value isn’t valued by society, by your community, or by others.

For example, what broke my mother’s heart was the way that society treated those with intellectual disabilities, and so she created the Special Olympics. One of the things that broke my father’s heart was poverty — financial poverty and spiritual poverty — and so he created the War on Poverty. My daughter’s heart breaks when animals are abused and left by the side of the road, and so she wrote a book about it, “Maverick and Me.” My other daughter’s heart breaks when she witnesses how indifferent and insensitive people are to those struggling with mental health, and so she’s made it her work to write articles that promote understanding of these issues. And so it goes…

There are several things that break my heart today. It’s broken by the fact that we still don’t have a cure for Alzheimer’s. It’s broken by the injustice so many of our fellow Americans face as they work so hard, yet still live paycheck to paycheck. It’s broken by the state of our criminal justice system and the way it treats many Americans. It’s broken listening to the young women of the USA gymnastics team speak out against the abuse they endured for far too long. (We honor them today as our Architects of Change of the Week for their bravery, their boldness, and their resolve to keep fighting.)

But, what really breaks my heart right now is how divided we are as a nation. How mean we are to one another. How critical we are of one another. How judgmental we are of each other and how angry we are at each other. Also, how lonely we all seem to be.

Yet, what moves me is the deep belief that we are all longing for the same things. We are all longing to be accepted, to be seen and understood, and to be invited into the space that unites us.

This space, I believe, is a big open field filled with dreamers and explorers. It’s filled with teachers and doctors, with mothers and fathers, and with the young and the old.

What breaks my heart is also what simultaneously fills and fuels my heart. It is a deep belief that we are more alike than we are different. It is the belief that we long to be more united than separate. It is the belief that we ache and break and want to put the pieces back together again, and that we want to do it together.

I’m not saying the anger that many of us feel today is not justified. But, let’s parlay our anger into action and allow it to fuel our purpose. I envision all of us with broken hearts coming together to heal and get to work, mending the crack in our divide. After all, the “United” part of America is what truly makes us great.

(Maria Shriver– Awakin Weekly)

So until tomorrow…Libby attended a Methodist church in Columbia last Sunday to hear her adorable little niece sing. She ended up getting a bonus by the minister finishing the sermon with a quote from Archibald Rutledge of Hampton Plantation. It is so beautiful and just… so “Archie.”

“I do not need some tremendous miracle to give me Faith in God; A violet would do, or a spire of goldenrod, or a daisy or two. But if I had to have a magic and wonder, to render any doubts asunder, To prove God true…It would be you.” (Now that’s a Valentine’s card!)



“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh




 Yesterday was a cold winter day again…so Eloise and I decided to just snuggle and stay warm inside…she was waiting on me with hearts on and a twinkle in her eyes. We are both at such compatible stages in life…we just want to eat, smile, rock and sleep during our winter hiatus. My kind of gal.

Here are four sample shots that Sarah Liz (professional photographer)……took and sent Mollie and Walsh as preliminaries to look over…she is an amazing photographer and such wonderful friends of Walsh and Mollie. If you are looking for someone to take pictures of your family…look no further.


*Open up the first photo ( Baby Eloise…on the website) and you can see more!

Ah….we know spring is coming when the redbud trees start blooming…Between Town Hall, the statue of long-time Mayor Berlin G. Myers, and some restaurants several rosebud trees were planted. They are just now getting tall enough to show off their pink glory. Just in time for Valentines Day. I hope you all  have a wonderful one!




About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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6 Responses to Making Broken Hearts Whole Again…For All of Us

  1. Jo Dufford says:

    Happy Valentine’s Day, Becky! May you feel all the love today that you daily show others.


  2. bcparkison says:

    Happy Day to you. Your Spring is way ahead of our spring( which is out there somewhere).
    Love the family picture. Proud parents.


  3. What a great post for today? I wrote down what breaks my heart, and then hd to ask myself, What are you going to do to help change it. Thank you. Beautiful pictures.


    • Becky Dingle says:

      That is a question we all need to ask and then, more importantly, do something about it. Thanks for taking time to respond and Happy Valentines!


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