FRAZIER: Being flawless is overrated, anyway

Published 4:00 am Saturday, October 29, 2022

It has been a crazy week; really a crazy month.

I have made two long road trips and finished the November/December edition of the Vicksburg Living Magazine. There have also been a couple of other goings-on that have kept my heart and mind occupied.

And during all these endeavors — some fun and some not so fun — I have tried to act, fulfill and respond perfectly.

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Perfect — it’s a word Merriam-Webster defines as being flawless, and Mary Poppins (practically perfect in every way) I’m not. I don’t know where in my life I grabbed hold of the notion that all things must be done to perfection, but I did and it oftentimes causes a lot of stress.

But ironically, after a month of going, going, going all while attempting to do everything just right, a book arrived in my mailbox, Tuesday, which has made me reconsider my skewed mindset.

The book, entitled “Life is Messy,” is written by Matthew Kelly, who I have now learned is a motivational speaker and founder of the Dynamic Catholic Institute.

My sister-in-law is Catholic. Therefore, I just assumed, since we often share with one another our struggles and joys, that she had sent me the book. But she claims she didn’t.

So, if she didn’t send it, I have taken this to mean someone from on high must have had a hand in it and is trying to convey a message to me. This thinking was solidified when I got to page 4 of the book.

There, Kelly jumps right into talking about perfection (see what I mean from on high) and in doing so describes to the reader the Japanese art form called kintsugi.

I had never heard of kintsugi, but as Kelly described it and then used it as an analogy as it pertains to perfection, his thought-provoking conclusion compelled me to rethink my obsession with the unattainable.

Kintsugi, Kelly said, is a form of ceramics and is used when something is broken, like a cup, a vase or a bowl.

With kintsugi, instead of the ceramic piece being tossed in the garbage, the broken pieces are glued back together with gold dust that has been sprinkled in the glue. Thus, Kelly said, “They don’t try to hide the cracks. They own them, honor them, even accentuate them by making them golden” — celebrating the crack as part of their story.

What an incredibly beautiful perspective and one that is so enlightening.

So much so, that while I ruminate on this art form of kintsugi, and contemplate how it differs from my need for perfection, I really think being flawless pales to being unique and one-of-a-kind.

And of course, who wouldn’t want to sparkle?

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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