Finding a little calm in the storm

Published 8:22 pm Thursday, December 13, 2018

With early Christmas deadlines looming, shopping still to be done and packages to wrap, finding calm almost seems impossible.

The holidays are always so busy.

I feel certain many of you are feeling the same way as me.

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In addition to the normal everyday workload and weekly chores, this time of year can include extra functions like Christmas parties, school performances and out-of-town company arriving.

While all of these things can be fun, they can also have a tendency to wear you out and make you feel distressed.

Doing too much of anything, even when it is fun, can be taxing.

So last week when I came upon a little peace, it was an unexpected surprise.

And the crazy thing is that it happened during an interview for a magazine story.

I was sitting inside Fatu Dia’s small hair braiding shop on Clay Street, and after the interview was over, I realized I didn’t want to get up and go.

There was something about the shop that made me feel peaceful even though the weather outside was cold and rainy.

As I tried to pry myself out of the couch, I finally realized it was not the warm building that was making me feel peaceful, it was Fatu.

Not only is she quite an interesting woman, Fatu was born and raised in Africa and braids hair for a living, she also exudes a serene presence.

During the interview, Fatu told me she loved braiding hair and that it made her feel at peace.

The crazy thing is her state of being was contagious, and I too was feeling a sense of calm.

When I finally decided it was time to go, I informed Fatu I might be back, and with the way things are going it may be sooner than later!

In thinking about Fatu’s calming demeanor, I remember another woman who projected similar qualities — Catherine Davis.

Mrs. Davis was the mother of one of my elementary school friends.

She was a petite woman who was a schoolteacher, and I loved spending time at their home.

Mrs. Davis spoke in a quiet voice, and like Fatu, she had a serene presence about her.

One of my fondest memories of Mrs. Davis was when she served her daughter, Cathy, and me breakfast on trays in the living room.

There was no hullabaloo about watching out for crumbs are spilling anything. She just quietly placed the trays on our laps. And the cool orange juice cups that looked liked carved-out oranges were an added bonus.

I will also remember one particular afternoon when Mrs. Davis was baking.

Cathy and I were in the kitchen, and her mom was making cheese biscuits.

She made the task look so simple, rolling out the dough paper-thin and then methodically cutting it into quarter sizes and placing it on cookie sheets to bake.

To this day, I have never tasted cheese biscuits as good as Mrs. Davis’.

In the season of hurry-scurry, it’s nice to be reminded, we can find a little calm. 

Who knows, it might just be around the corner.

Terri Cowart Frazier is a staff writer at The Vicksburg Post. Readers are invited to submit their opinions for publication.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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