Teamotions Story

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Hello everybody. My name is Rachel Tenpenny Crawford. And I’m the co-founder of Teamotions. And my sister and I Crystal Tenpenny founded Teamotions together in 2011 if you can believe that. I know it might seem like a long time. But trust me, for us, it has flown by. And we have learned so much along the way.  

But one of the things that has not changed is our commitment to the emotional well-being of our customers. And that is sort of where I wanted to go straight into today. I wanted to talk clearly and openly and share from my heart Teamotions story because it’s something that we don’t get to talk about that much. We put Teamotions’ story in a really small paragraph so that people can get a tidbit of our background and understand why Teamotions exist and where it came from. And we put little blurbs here. I mention it when I teach tea-tasting classes. But I don’t really have that much opportunity to go into depth and really share with you the journey that Crystal and I have been on as we help build Teamotions into the company that we want it to be and equip Teamotions to help our customers the way they deserve to be helped.

I can give you a little bit of background on our family. Crystal and I are sisters. I’m the oldest. We actually have another sister in the middle of us, and then Crystal is the youngest. My parents had three girls in three years, so Crystal and I are just three years apart just a bit more. My birthday is in March, and hers is in May. And we have loved each other our whole lives. All three of us sisters have always gotten along, and to this day, are really close.

And so, the life events that we have gone through, we’ve largely gone through together. And we’ve gone through them not just as sisters but as a whole entire family. And I feel blessed to be able to say that.

And part of the reason why Teamotions even came to be was because of how much my sister loved me and how much she wanted to help me feel better when I was in the most broken, darkest time of my life.

In 2008, my twin baby daughters, Aubrey and Ellie died a couple of weeks after they were born. And I don’t want to misconstrue. My whole family was there for me. I have an amazingly supportive family. But it was Crystal’s love for me and her deep-hearted desire to help me find some relief or some healing from my pain that triggered Teamotions.

My daughters’ deaths were sudden. They were born prematurely. And they died of complications due to being born premature.

Ellie lived for seven days. And Aubrey lived for 13 days. And losing them is the hardest thing I’ve ever gone through… hands down.

Unfortunately, I’ve also been through a divorce. My divorce is actually very recent. And for those of you out there who have been divorced, I can tell you that a bad divorce, a hard divorce is almost on par—not quite, but almost on par—with the death of a child.

It’s a different type of hard. It’s different circumstances. But broken relationships are awful. And a broken heart is a broken heart.

And for every single person listening, if you’re a mother who’ve lost a baby, I see you. I know what you’ve gone through. If you’re a father who has lost a child, I relate. If you are a brother or a sister whose lost a niece or a nephew, we hear you. If you are a spouse who has lost a relationship, we hear you.

If you have ever had a broken heart, if you have ever been scared, if you have ever had to recover from colossal mistakes and things that you regret, if you’ve had to overcome addiction, if you’ve had to handle being separated from a loved one for a long period of time, if you’ve just had to restore your self-esteem or put yourself back together again after a trauma or a tragedy… we see you.

We might not have experienced exactly what you’ve gone through, but we know what a broken heart does. And we know what pain does. And it is our mission at Teamotions to help give you the tools, support and resources that you need to put your heart back together again.

After Aubrey and Ellie died, tea became my security blanket. It became my comfort. It became the thing that got me through one minute, one hour, one day at a time.

And you could pretty much tell how I was doing based on how many cups of tea I was drinking a day. And I love tea because it’s warm and it’s quiet and it’s soothing and it’s delicious and it’s safe. And when I was a really hard day, I drank lots of cups of tea. And when I was coping a bit better, I drank fewer cups of tea. 

And one day, Crystal was visiting me at my house. And what a lot of people don’t know also about this story is, at that time, a couple of weeks after Aubrey and Ellie died, Crystal called off her wedding only three weeks before her wedding date. And it was a horribly traumatic time for her as well.

And so, our family, in general, was just going through some really hard things. Big, life-altering events were happening all over the place. I was burying my children. Crystal was calling off her wedding. Our other sister was actually going through some things. Our parents were going through some things.

We just look back and just think, “Wow! That was one hard year for our family.”

And what made it even harder for us is we were at a loss at how to help each other. Unfortunately, there’s no manual for grief, there’s no manual for heartbreak. There isn’t a ‘five steps to put the pieces back together’ or ‘three things you can do to make it right again.’ Depending on the circumstances, the situation, the people involved, you just have to feel your way through. And that was unbelievably exhausting and frustrating for all of us to just stare at each other going, “I want to help you. I love you. And I hate to see you in pain, but I don’t have a clue what to do for you.”

And I was frustrated because I was hurting and in pain, but I didn’t even know what to do for myself, so I couldn't even ask. I couldn't even ask for help. We would just sit there and just hurt. I would drink tea, a cup of tea after a cup of tea, hoping that maybe, someday, I would wake up and it wouldn't feel so terrible.

And one morning, Crystal was visiting me. And I was on my fourth cup of tea by 10 a.m. which meant I was having a hard time that day. And she could tell. She could see it. She looked at me and she said, “Rachel, I wish there was something I could put in your tea that would make you feel better.”

And that was that moment when we realized that’s what we needed to do. We needed to find what we could put in tea that would up level its already warm and soothing and delicious and comforting qualities to a tea that actually had emotional well-being properties.

But what was even more important about what Crystal said to me speaks to the essence of Teamotions. Teamotions is not a tea company. Teamotions is an emotional well-being company. And the real idea behind Teamotions is not figuring out what you could put in tea that would make you feel better, but figuring out what you could do for somebody you love to help them hurt a little bit less when their heart is broken. That is what Teamotions is about.

Teamotions is about helping people put the pieces of their heart back together again. It’s about helping people cultivate emotional well-being in their life. It’s about helping people find the hope, support and tools that they need to be healthy and whole and healed. That is the essence of Teamotions’ story.

And so, from that point on, Crystal and I went on a mission. We decided to figure out, find and research what you could actually put in tea. What we decided to put in our tea are called adaptogen herbs. And I’m not going to go through them here, but we’ll talk about that in another podcast. They’re amazing. And we created the first best and only line of tea specifically for emotional well-being.

The importance of telling our story isn’t just so that I can have a voice. It isn’t just so that I can tell you what happened to me and share my sweet, little daughters with you. But more importantly, it’s our hope that, by telling our story, you will find the courage to tell yours—and not just tell it, but keep writing it because, really, for all of us, including Teamotions, this is just the beginning of our story. We have a lot of our story left to write. And together, your story becomes part of our story.

And I encourage you, if you use Teamotions, if you have a story to tell and Teamotions is a part of it, will you please share it with us? You can contact us via email or go to our Facebook page and leave a comment. But we would love, love, love to hear how your story is part of Teamotions’ story or how Teamotions is part of your story.

And we would love to share those things. We love to reach out to you. Teamotions is nothing without the people who use it and make it part of their story.

I’d like to share a little quote with you, one of my favorite quotes. It’s powerful and it really gets to the essence of Teamotions. Viktor Frankl is the author of this quote. He is a very famous psychologist who is also a Holocaust survivor. And he wrote an amazing book called Man’s Search for Meaning. I highly recommend that you read it. But for now, I will share a powerful quote with you. It says this:

“When we no longer are able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves. Everything can be taken from a man, but one thing, the last of the human freedoms, to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances to chose one’s own way.”

That is the essence of what we believe at Teamotions, that you might not have been able to control what happened to you, but you can control what happens to your heart. And it’s our goal to supply you with the right support, tools and relationships to empower you to take your heart back.

And that’s why Teamotions exist. We have a single goal. It’s to offer hope and healing in any circumstance.

We have a message, a mission, and a method. Our message is that “your heart matters.” Our mission is to “leave no heart behind.” And our method is “education, support and tools.”

Our tea is just one of our tools. And it’s very important to make that distinction. Tea is just one of the tools that we use at Teamotions to help you achieve and maintain emotional well-being. And whether you are just stressed out and need more daily support or whether you have been through something life-altering like I went through, our goal is to empower you to have healing if that’s what you want, to help you see that you don’t have to be a victim of circumstance. Like Victor Frankl says, even when you are no longer able to change your situation, you are challenged to change yourself.

The one thing that I’ve learned in my life is it’s one thing to want to change, and it’s another thing to be able to. And change is so much more possible when we have the right support, tools and relationships to do it, the education to know even what to do and then the support to do it when it gets really hard and you’re exhausted, and then all of the tools you need at your disposal.

Our teas are powerful tools for hope and healing. But it’s also our goal to create lots of other things that help empower people to heal. I’m not going to tell you what those are right now, but there’s going to be some exciting things in the future. So keep an eye on Teamotions because we’re just going to keep growing and getting better at equipping you with what you need.

Someday, it is our hope that every human will understand the value of their own heart and that hurting, broken hearts are not good. They’re not how life is supposed to be. A heart should be whole and healed.

And our mission, to leave no heart behind is so important because we’re all in this together. We need each other’s help. We’re not mean to just do this alone. And your heart is worth our time and energy. You matter to us.

And then, education, support and tools are there because, unfortunately, we’re not innately born with these things. We have to learn how to take care of our heart.

I’ve said it many times before, but grief skills, grief recovery skills, healing skills, these things are life skills. We don’t just know how to do them; we have to learn them.

And there’s a lot of bad advice out there. There’s a lot of cultural myths and misunderstandings. And we talk through those things at Teamotions and we give you the right education so that you know how to ask for what you need which is part of getting the right support. And then, we provide you with all the tools and resources we can possibly find. And if we can’t find them, we create them.

That’s where we’re coming from. We’re coming from our personal experience which is our story. Crystal and I have had our fair set of challenges. We are full of compassion. This is not a place of judgment. All we want to do is see broken people heal.

And we are committed to making sure that no one is ever alone on this journey. We’re not meant to do this life by ourselves. And that doesn’t mean that we can make you heal or that we’re responsible for your healing. That’s a choice only you can make. But we will certainly do whatever we can to walk with you and hold you up and support you along the way.

And to wrap it up, I want to read you something that we wrote for Teamotions that explains. And now, I hope that when I read this, it’ll make more sense than it ever has. And when you talk about Teamotions, when you use Teamotions, when you share Teamotions, I hope you have a better understanding of how to explain it and what it is that you’re sharing, that aside from the amazing adaptogen herbs in our teas, aside from their fantastic flavor profiles, aside from how beautiful they are and how many wonderful products and gift boxes and seasonal blends and things that we have—which are all wonderful—I hope that what you are really able to share and excited to share and motivated to share with others is our commitment to helping people achieve emotional well-being in their life.

And in a future podcast, I will talk about what emotional well-being is, how to actually define emotional well-being. And spoiler alert, it doesn’t mean being happy all the time. I will go into that.

I will also expand on our method, mission and message. I think that’s really important to get into because the most important thing I want you to hear there is that you matter, your heart matters.

And at another time, I’ll also dig deep. And Crystal will help me with this one because she really is the expert. We’ll talk about the adaptogens because the adaptogen component in our teas is what elevates a largely emotional mission that we have and brings in that holistic physiological component because part of healing isn’t just our feelings.  It’s our mindset. It’s our physical body. It’s our spiritual self. There are so much that goes into emotional well-being. And we talk about it all.

So, I hope that you’ll continue to tune in to our podcast. Listen, absorb the information.

If you have any questions, if there’s a topic you’d like us to cover, please reach out to us. We would love to hear from you. And like I asked before, if you have a story that you’d like to tell, if you want to share with us how Teamotions is part of your story or how you are part of Teamotions’ story, please reach out. It’s these types of things that just make what we do at Teamotions worth it.

So, in closing, let me read to you something that we wrote a long, long time ago. And we hope that you’ll share this with your friends.

“Our goal is to bring back into focus the inherent human need for emotional health and wellness. Tea is our chosen vessel, our means of reaching out to others in a tangible way to express something intangible, our genuine care for their emotional well-being. It is our belief that a meaningful existence is impossible without emotional wellness. We hope our teas inspire you to achieve clarity, discover joy, seek peace, have hope, enjoy rest and find strength in all you do.”

Thank you for listening everybody. We’ll be back soon. Take care.


1 comment

  • It was a pleasure meeting you this Sunday. After speaking with you I felt your energy and healing. Your story was my story and Doras story too. As women we need to talk about those difficult subjects and place no judgment. All of us have been though something. Thanks for sharing and it made me comfortable sharing my story. You are a blessing and I will continue to support you. May you have peace and blessing through your journey of life.
    God bless you Jameelah( US Army Disabled Veteran)

    Jameelah Johnson

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