Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Personal Side of Tea Part 2

In the last blog, I shared that although I'm a tea expert and tea book author, tea is also very personal to me.  So today I want to continue with why I thought the movie Soul Surfer had such an impact on our family.  If you need to be brought up to speed, you might want to read The Personal Side of Tea Part 1

Although there wasn't any tragic accident, our family also has an amputee. My oldest child, Zach was born with several birth defects-one of which is missing his left foot and ankle. This is one of the reasons I chose a business that was flexible due to all the doctor visits that were needed. As you can see from the picture below, his disabilities haven't slowed him down.  There were times when he was little that I caught myself saying, "Isn't he supposed to be handicapped?" as I would try to keep up with his constant running and climbing!

Just before his 5th grade year ended, he needed a revision to his limb to help his prosthesis fit better. He knew and we knew that it was going to be a long recovery. My husband and I weren't rookies at surgeries. We have learned how "to do" surgery as this was his fifth surgery and not his last. We have developed a routine for waiting for the outcome of the surgeries.  One of them is bringing our tea with us. 

 As we began "our routine" of waiting while the surgery was going on, our trusted tea-stained thermos full of tea was there with us. As we settled in for the long wait to hear the outcome, it was comforting to sip our familiar brew and pray our son was going to be okay.  Our tea time in the waiting room is reflective with quiet prayers being whispered.

He came home with badges just like the girl in the movie and his recovery was difficult. He spent a lot of time in his bed for almost three weeks because it hurt too bad to move. I had to carry him piggyback down the stairs when he wanted to come down. Then after that, it was a wheelchair for most of the summer. Some of our tea times were spent weeping together because it was so hard to see your child in so much pain! 

Zach in his wheelchair with Kate by his side at his end-of-soccer-season party
A difficulty just doesn't happen to one person in the family, everyone is affected by it. What was so amazing to my husband and me, was our daughter Kate's actions who was just 5 years old at the time of the surgery. She sat by his side and played games with him in his bed. She even declared she wasn't going to swim that summer-even though she LOVED to swim-since Zach couldn't. She kept her word and didn't swim all summer long! Some of our tea times were spent marveling at how sweet and sacrificing our daughter was and is.

She is a different person having watched her older brother go through all of his difficulties and so are we. I watched my son's determination to get back to school and soccer in the fall.  He had one week to rehab in his new prosthesis before heading to his first day of middle school and just two weeks before soccer started back up again.  He would come home from both in pain and sometimes bleeding from his newly formed scars.  We would ice his leg and then he would get right back up and do it again.  Our tea time then was full of celebration because our son is a fighter and so is his family!

 I love that tea can represent so many different things.  It can be a pick-me-up when I need to get going in the morning. It can be a social event when I want to share time with friends and family.  It can be a comfort for when things are grim.  It can be a wonderful companion when I seek solitude or need some time alone.  It can also be a celebration for a special occasion such as a bridal shower, baby shower, or a child accomplishing great things!  What do you love about tea? 

My love of tea goes beyond my business and is deeply personal at times. I wanted my readers to have a peek into my personal side of tea. Be sure to join me next time for the conclusion of the personal side of tea as I share more. It is interesting how business and personal connect when your business is tea! 
Happy Sipping and Reflecting, Lisa


  1. Great post! It's fun to know more about your family. The pictures were great.

  2. Dearest Lisa,

    That is quite a story you got to tell. Life can be tough for some of us but in the end, the rewards and satisfaction for all the sacrifices and hardship are so rewarding. Glad that Zach did not give up; that will help him for the rest of his life, also when his parents are no longer around...
    Lots of love and happy summer to you. Okay, I now go and have my fresh mint tea from our own garden. Learned that from some Turkish friends in The Netherlands! Both of us did go to the Hospital's Fitness Center and now it's unwinding...