I don't quite remember when I fell in love with tea but I do remember the most special moments of me drinking tea. I was eighteen years old and I went to live with my biological mother for four months. I had just met her months earlier and it was awkward for both of us. She and her ex-husband lived a very quiet life in Boulder, Colorado. He was a professor at one of the universities and she was a housewife. After years of drug addiction and being in and out of jail, she deserved the break. I was homeless so she and her husband agreed to let me come live with them. Each evening my mother and I would find a spot in the living room with a cup of tea and a book.

Now, years later, I'm a self proclaimed tea expert. I start each day with a wonderful English Breakfast tea to get me going. As the day progresses, who knows what wonderful tea I will crown queen. But for sure, I have at least three cups of tea a day. And yes, when I can, I have tea everyday at about 3:00 P. M. I love to invite my friends over for tea and cupcakes and so far everyone thinks it’s a delightful experience. I am always in search of the best blend of tea. Yes, I’m a tea snob, I prefer loose tea but I do like some bags also. I have learned not to judge a book by it’s cover. Some bags can be quite nice. And yes again, any Diva knows, what you drink your tea out of is very important.

Tea for me is a way of life. It's wellness for the mind body and spirit. Here, I will explore every expect of tea possible, with a high concentration on wellness. I will review the best teas, the best places to have tea, the best ways to brew tea, the best tea accessories, what tea goes best with what foods, and the list goes on and on. I plan to share my passion for tea with you. And I've been told, nothing I do is ever boring so be prepared to go on this tea journey with me.

RLT Collection Tea Ball Frosted Clear Beads!

Mint Medley by The Persimmon Tree Tea Company

About This Tea:

Until recently I had never drank Peppermint Tea made with loose leaves. And Honestly, I will probably never go back. The freshness of loose Peppermint Tea cannot be denied. When I open the can of Mint Medley, From The Persimmon Tree Tea Company, I feel as if I stepped into a garden of peppermint leaves. It is a perfect blend of organic peppermint and spearmint leaves grown in the US.

Mint Medley has become a favorite and I find myself reaching for this tea tin almost everyday. It is great for on-going nausea. The health benefits and endless. It relieves muscle aches, headaches, migraines, stress. And now that it feels like someone is sitting on my chest and I have a mean cough, I'm sure it will help to relieve some of this congestion in my chest. Mint Medley has been in my tea cup more than any tea as of late. It has really helped with my winter cough, congestion related to this bout of pneumonia. You can read my full review on The Persimmon Tree Tea Company Mint Teas.

RLT Collection AIDS Awareness Tea Ball!

Welcome to my world of books! As an pre-teen books changed my world. I fell in love with the writers of the Harlem Renaissance period and the more I read the more I wanted to read. The fiction of this period was powerful and empowering all at the same time. It spoke to my own degradation and gave me hope for a better tomorrow. It gave me purpose for my own life and the courage to fight the good fight and never surrender.

I love to read! Inside a book I escape into someone else's life. There is something wonderful about turning to the next page of a wonderful story. Something intoxicating about the smell of the book and the story it brings to life. Reading brings me joy, and these days with my health in the balance, I find solace in my books.

I spent hours in my bedroom sequestered with the door closed reading the classics from the Harlem Renaissance, Hughes, Larsen, Hurston, Wright and Baldwin. Books became my escape and my salvation. The fiction of this period was powerful and empowering all at the same time. It gave me purpose for my own life and the courage to fight the good fight and never surrender.

Reading is the one thing that the pain of my life could never take away from me. It was the thing that helped to make it better. And even today, living with AIDS, books continue to be the safest place for me. It’s the one thing that belongs to me that AIDS cannot take away from me.The RLTReads book club will be books that I choose. It’s me sharing a part of me with you that has nothing to do with AIDS. It’s actually in spite of AIDS.

The RLTReads book club will be books that I choose. It’s me sharing a part of me with you that has nothing to do with AIDS. It’s actually in spite of AIDS. I have read hundreds of books from many different genres and I will pick the best of my reads over the years. I warn you, it will not be exclusively white or black, male or female, fiction or non fiction, it will be all of them.

I’m so excited and I’m grateful to everyone who wants to be a part of this venture. We already have 110 Book Club Members. You can email me @ RLTReads@raelewisthornton.com. The Twitter hashtag is #RLTReads. We can make this book club as wonderful as we want to make it. Who says that Oprah has to have the only ownership to a wonderful book club?

This Month We are Reading In My Fathers House by E Lynn Harris

Read along and join our discussion July 19th at 7 pm CST

For more Tea with Rae "Vlogs" Click here to visit her youtube channel

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

And Here Comes The Shit..

I didn't panic as the shit began to seep out of my behind in line at Walgreens. I mean, I am the queen of shitting on myself. Like for real, for real. In fact, I've shitted on myself so much over the years with AIDS and have told those stories so many times, that one of my most famous mishaps is the muse for the lead character in actress Sheryl Lee Ralph's one woman show, "Sometimes I Cry: The Lives of Women Infected and Affected by HIV!" Yep, "Ms. Chanel," that's me, shitted on myself in a restaurant, dressed to the nines, in St. John and Chanel, had a melt down, clean my butt with toilet paper and toilet water and waltz out of that bathroom like the Diva I am and finished my dinner.

Shitting on myself is no big deal, I've been there, done that! I thought that I was emotionally immune to a shitty behind and clothes. So as the poop seeped out of my butt in Walgreens last Sunday, I told myself, "You can do this girly!" So I gently laid the items that I was holding on the counter, whispered to the cashier, "I'll be right back," and I walked out of that Walgreens and headed across the street to Starbucks where I knew a bathroom would be guaranteed. "I got this," I whispered to myself again. But right in the middle of the street between Walgreens and Starbucks, my ass exploded and poop splashed out of my ass like a water hydrant on a hot summer day in the hood. I flexed my ass muscles inward but that was futile, the poop kept coming and coming and coming. I could feel it trickle down my thigh and I knew that the light tan shorts that I was wearing would not be my savior. 

I walked briskly into Starbucks as the poop kept coming and went straight to the ladies bathroom. The door was locked, I moaned, "You have got to be kidding." As panic crossed my face I reached for the handle on the men's room right next door. "Lord please let it be empty," I mumbled as poop and panic sucked the life out of me.

 "Thank God,"I cried as I pulled my shorts down and sat on the toilet. As poop flowed out of my behind like water in a faucet, I looked down at my shorts around my ankle full of shit and sighed deeply. 

"Bitch you can't have nothing easy, can you?" I asked myself. Like for real, I feel like I'm on a perpetual "Job Test," or something. Let's see how resilient she really is, that's what I think is someone's plan for me; yep how can "We," whoever we are, the devil, the universe, the Karma from my last life time, God, some crazy ass with a voodoo doll is putting me to the freakin test, to see how much I can really withstand.

YES, they are scheming against me, I can hear them now, "She thinks she's immune to shit, well, lets show her. She thinks she's a tough cookie, well what's she gonna do with this shit?" Yep, that seems to be my test. My doctor even said yesterday,"Like why can't you get something easy like strep throat." All we could both do was chuckle.

But there was no chuckle in me sitting on the toilet in Starbucks. This was not going to be an easy one. My shorts were so soil, I knew I could not leave the bathroom the way that I had came. I just didn't have it in me to put those shitty shorts back on and walk out that door. I sat defeated! After three days of taking laxatives  and shitting this was becoming all to much for me, just way to much. My ass had diaper rash and now shit was everywhere, my ass, the toilet sit, the floor and bathed in my tan shorts.

"I'm tired Lord ,"I mumbled, "tireddddddd." After the BlogHer conference I came home and hit the sack. I was beat to no end. The IV medication was still in my system when the conference started, so my struggles during the conference, I believed to be a residual from the IV medication. The pain in my side and back just wouldn't go away, but I had checked on my kidneys, which is the biggest danger while on cidofovir and they were fine, so I kept it moving.

But after 3 days in bed after the conference, I knew something else had to be wrong with me. By that Wednesday night, I crawled out  of bed and made my way to the ER. After fourteen hours, the doctor had the answer. My bowels were totally full. "Excuse me," I said. "Yes," the attending that had taken over my case said, "The exray shows that your bowels are totally full from one end, to the other." I looked at him long and hard, "He had got to be kidding me," I thought to myself, while trying to make sense of what he was saying. 

"But I've had bowel movements everyday." I said. "Well," he explained, "Sometimes, loose stool can escape constipation and slip out the side.  Hummmmm, for once in my life I was speechless. I sat puzzled. He continued to explain that he was prescribing Magnesium Citrate to help clean out my bowels.

 I arrived back home at 4:00 A. M. tired and beat down. The next morning I began the process of cleaning me out. I touched based with HIV doctor, who manages my primary care and she suggested an additional laxative and concurred with the ER doctor that it may take a couple of rounds. We knew what the problem was, but had no answers to why I had the problem. The first step was to clean out all those freakin toxins from my body. 

Thursday I spent the entire day in the bathroom and it was not pretty. Friday morning when I woke up, I was so red and raw I couldn't go another round. I needed a freaking break. I had small bowels movements throughout the day but I was not in any condition to drink another bottle of Magnesium Citrate. When I woke up Saturday morning my pain level hadn't decreased one bit and I pulled myself emotionally together for another day of laxatives. After breakfast, I drink that nasty bottle right on down and waited, and waited, and waited and waited and nothing came. My stomach was on fire, but still nothing came.

 After about 6 hours of waiting it was clear to me, that particular laxative was no longer working for me and I headed to Walgreens to pick up the other one my doctor recommended.

YES! I was standing in line with a laxative in my hand when the poop started to sip out of my behind. "Really Lord, like for real for real God,"I mumbled. I've been sitting at home all day and now the shit decides to come. Usually I'm able to laugh at the madness, but sitting on that toilet in starbucks, looking down at my shitty shorts 3 blocks from my house, I was numb.

"What the fuck am I going to do?" I asked myself over and over and over. I just sat, looking down at my shitty legs and shorts, unable to put together any kind of action plan. Super Woman had left the room.

To Be Continued... 

blog comments powered by Disqus
Clicky Web Analytics