When Mother’s Day comes around, I am guaranteed several things: handmade gifts from the kids, some kind of stationery, a homemade breakfast, messages from loved ones…and a little yearning in my heart for my own mom. As each year goes by, Mother’s Day feels different. It has shifted to being about me. I don’t know exactly when it happened but I am now at that point where I truly feel like the mother figure in my family, and I hope my mom continues to guide me to be everything that role entails. As I wrote about recently, my family suffered another loss last month, my mom’s eldest sister. I learned that losing a mother figure can completely rip open that wound, and I learned that ‘mother’ lives in many people. In the midst of this emotional time comes the release of a project I was lucky to be a part of – a tribute to moms called Moms Run On Chai. It’s a production by Pink Chai Media for Tea India, and it’s special to me for many reasons. Have a quick look at the video – see if you can spot me, my oldest daughter and my son!

Here are 5 reasons why I’m thrilled to be part of Moms Run On Chai:

    1. When I was getting into role for this video (I know, I’m a mom…I should already be in ‘role’) I had to conjure up a really motherly feeling. While I packed the lunch kit, checked in on my daughter sleeping, poured the tea, reflected on my day in the scenes of this video, I had to get into character of the mommiest mom I ever knew. And it was MY mom. One hundred percent. She was that mom who did everything to make our mornings easy, our days go well, and our nights comfortable. Whether it was bringing us snacks as we studied, praying for us through anything, researching extracurricular activities, and much, much more, she did it with what I obviously have subconsciously absorbed as the essence of motherhood. Caregiving. That’s what it was. So, as I was going through each scene, I truly felt like my mom was with me. And watching the video I can even see her reflected. She would have shared the heck out of this video, too. I know she would have been proud.
    2. I got to do this with two of my kids! I love that this day was a memory for the 3 of us, and this video like a keepsake of that experience. I’m usually the one taking the pictures or the videos. My selfie skills and short arms create some odd captures when I’m trying to incorporate myself in photos with them. To have a professional team shoot us was awesome. Photo Credit: AzizDhamani.commoms run on chai, pink chai media, tea india, let me out creative, taslim jaffer
    3. I had declared 2017 as Taslim’s Year of Fun and started it off with trips to the theatre to watch live productions. That got me thinking about different art forms, and what I’ve tried and what I haven’t. I kid you not when I tell you, I actually thought to myself, “I haven’t tried acting.” In fact, I thought about it several times before this opportunity came up; when it did, I tossed my name in the hat for selections to be made by Tea India. And I didn’t hesitate, either. This was something I truly wanted to try and the whole experience with how I got the gig just reaffirmed my belief in manifesting parts of our journey.
    4. Making chai is symbolic of so much for me. It is a long time tradition in my family to serve and drink tea several times a day, and while I’m not a 3-cups a day type of person, I do enjoy more than just the taste of a good cup of chai. It’s knowing that I am taking part in something that my parents, grandparents, great-grandparents also did. It’s like sharing something from their lifetime when so much else has changed, including geography. And I love that I am the chai-maker in my family at our gatherings. One of my favourite parts of having people over is asking them, “Who wants chai?” and seeing all the hands go up. Then I retreat to the kitchen and get just the right number of tea bags. When I get positive feedback on the chai, my heart literally swells. Making a good cup of chai is taking care of somebody, offering them comfort and relaxation. So, working with a brand who truly values this was perfect. Photo Credit: AzizDhamani.commoms run on chai, tea india, pink chai media, taslim jaffer, let me out creative
    5. Last but not least, this project allowed me to work with my friend Raj from Pink Chai Media who I met years ago online. She asked me on Twitter to meet her for tea and our friendship has grown since that first chai date. Neither of us dreamed that we’d get to collaborate on something like this, though! Through Raj, I got to meet Aziz who is a whiz behind that lens! Working with him and videographer Gabriel Gonzales was so much fun. They made that full day go by quickly and I even got to practice a little aperture-talk I had just learned from a recent photography class, plus try out a few Spanish phrases on Gabriel. And you might recognize my friend Salma showing her strength with the kettlebell in the video? Life brings amazing people to me year after year. I’m blessed to be surrounded by people with such creative talent and a love of art.

Are you a tea-drinker? A chai-lover? Then you should head over to Tea India’s Facebook contest and enter to win a year’s supply of tea! Contest ends 11:59 pm May 15, 2017. Good luck!

Tell me about your favourite cup of tea or tea memory in the comments! I’d truly love to hear!

taslim jaffer, let me out creative