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A Dedication To My Mother

August 13, 2020

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My Mother, Masako

We all have a story to tell. And it’s not a popularity thing or a being famous thing. I believe it’s a responsibility, that the more privileged one is, the more we are obligated to share our story because there are so many who don’t have one -a voice.

Key To Teas, is one representation and expression of myself; yet a very big one - a continued tea journey where I’ve built a career on sharing the goodness of tea, its remarkable taste, its health & wellness benefits, and how this amazing beverage can connect so many people from around the world. Fine Tea lovers have a mutual respect for how tea is grown, produced, harvested, blended and how closely the ritual of drinking tea is to practicing mindfulness and overall a pursuit to achieving well-being.;

I am still very timid to share my personal story. Quite frankly, I think there are more people who are shy, timid, introverted and would rather lead a quiet lifestyle than overtly share pieces of themselves with others. Until at your job, if you are in a leadership position, you are most likely to be obligated and required to be vulnerable so you can lead teams while inspiring along the way. Brene Brown anyone? But mostly for me, mid-life crisis has kicked in where I struggle everyday with an internal dialogue,"What have I done in the world? What more can I do? What have I accomplished? What haven’t I accomplished? If I were to leave this world tomorrow, what will I be known for? Nothing. What will I leave my children? What is my legacy?" These are all blessings and demons in my mind.

Sharing my story is part healing, part empowerment, part advocacy and mostly a thank you and dedication to my mother who is still living today at 80 years old(she is still spry). The photo is of her in 1996, a different era that I took, just two months shy of unexpectedly becoming a widow in what seemed like a distant land, Singapore, then.

There’s something super humbling about the age of 80 and I am acutely aware that she won’t be living forever. And I feel like I haven’t thanked her enough, that I’m running out of time to thank her for all her grace and selfless love. If you were to think about someone who’s given their everything to always lend an ear or a helping hand no matter who you are, that’s my super hero mom. My creative, talented, artistic mom who put her creative artistic journey on the backburner to support my father’s career and adopt two children and raise them like their/her own.

I’m going to keep on shedding light to my mother in snippets of little stories, because I want her legacy to live on through me, her daughter, and hopefully for the next generation and the next.

Without her, I would be Nothing. There wouldn’t be a ME and it’s a visceral sadness that is deeply engrained into my soul, of wanting to do good to others as she has done for me.

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