As a maker, mother and advocate for women in both business and in the tea fields from which we source our organic leaves, today I celebrate the women who give so much to be present for their children. I started Zhena's Gypsy Tea as a single mom whose baby needed a life-saving operation and when I discovered fair trade, the miracle of supporting the mothers in the tea fields became my second mission.
Making money to support a child is in itself a tremendous amount of work. We not only do that, but we give birth and nurture their physical bodies into adulthood. Mothers give of their breath, their soul, and their heart in order to grow a child. We don't sleep well as our "mom ears" are always tuned to the smallest sound of our children. We are adept at soothing the disappointments and discomforts of our littles, and are tireless in feeding them spiritually, emotionally and physically.
We honor the mothers in the tea fields today and all days through our sourcing of fair trade, organic teas. The mothers in the tea fields pluck an average of 8 kilograms of tea a day in order to earn $1.50. That is 16,000 plucks to make what we lose in the bottom of our purses. But with our fair trade tea gardens, there are social programs that ensure the mothers receive $12.50 or more--still so little--but monumental for hand labor in developing nations. The mothers in the tea fields from which we source are also ensured healthcare, maternity leave, and education for their children. Often this is more than those of us in the west are offered as mothers.
We are in a world where the body that has given birth to us is also often neglected or abused. Nature, Mother Earth, she is the one who has lent us her body in order to fulfill our human experience of destiny and sensory living. She has handed us her soil, her soul, and her infinite beauty so that we may be born and breathe and live a sacred and precious existence on earth. We give back to her through sourcing only organic ingredients and using recycled materials to ship our teas to our beloved clients. Today we honor her, our Great Mother, as well, giver of life, her splendor our guide.
We cannot ever know the sacrifice of each individual mom in the world, but we can know that we would not exist without our mothers nor the Great Mother. From a womb we were brought forth to breathe and to feel and to be. We cannot know what one mother has sacrificed nor how she would have lived had she chosen to take her life force and directed it entirely toward herself.
For those of us who have fought our mothers, or been abused by them, or have strained relations with them, we ache in the very core of our being to heal this wound. For those of us who have lost our mothers, we remember them tenderly or with whimsy. For those of us who have had a mother who didn't have a mother of her own, we struggled to raise our moms into women we could trust.
My children invented me. Sage, my son, made me into a woman who could pay bills, survive abuse, and become an advocate for other women. My daughter has made me into a woman of intention, where I have agreed not to "burn out" nor model a mode of being that is not filled with attention to what is true and good in the world. My children have made me as much as I had birthed them. A cooperative connection, these beings built me into a woman I too could count on.
For all of you mothers, mothered, and motherless, I offer you the distinct energy of being cherished today and all days. We have been through so much, just being born, just giving birth, just working and cooking and adapting to all that is, it all is the miracle. It all is the magic. Today we honor all that is feminine and mothering, from the chirping birds to the shady tree, to the women that made both you and me.
Happy Mother's Day,
Founder, Magic Hour