First, the name ALOHA LOLO...what does it mean? This is a question I am often asked. Aloha is a Hawai'ian greeting and farewell used in Hawai'i, a place I visit often and where my heart pulls me. But ALOHA also has a deeper meaning. Aloha is a way of life often referred to in Hawai'i as the Aloha Spirit or The Way of Aloha. Aloha is being a part of all, and all being a part of me. When there is pain - it is my pain. When there is joy - it is also mine. I respect all that is as part of the Creator and part of me. I will not willfully harm anyone or anything. When food is needed I will take only my need and explain why it is being taken. The earth, the sky, the sea are mine to care for, to cherish and to protect.
Second, the name LOLO, LoLo is a family nickname given to me by my dear nieces and nephews many moons ago when they couldn't pronounce my name Lauren. One nephew said Auntie Yellow and Yellow turned into LoLo. This name traveled with me into many different places and cultures. LoLo means something different each place I connect. In fact, LoLo in Hawai'ian means crazy which always starts conversations with a laugh when I introduce myself there. In other cultures, it aligns with enlightenment. For me, the nickname LoLo is genuine and transparent. When someone calls me by my nickname I feel only LOVE.
Which leads me to my story; one that is intertwined with many other stories I have collected along the way and has created a beautiful recipe of unconditional love, science and a dash of adventure. The knowledge that I have gathered over the years, the experiments with truths and the science I researched and applied to my daily practice of LIVING healed me. The combination of daily meditation, natural body movement and a diet that was exactly right for me bettered my own personal health in Body, Mind, and Spirit. In sharing me, and the tools I use daily to heal and nurture myself, I AM leading others to heal themselves.
The journey to my best health began through a practice of mindful and healing meditation in 1998 at the young age of 18 years alive after an illness left me questioning everything. This illness left me bedridden in a hospital for a week and months of regaining my strength. My mind at the time was what I now call a “chaotic mind”. There was never any peace and if it was, it was because I had experienced something in a happy moment outside of myself and blamed myself when I wasn't happy all the time. But the mind has to be loved unconditionally and traumas, big or small, need to be addressed, healed and released of their negative energy before the peace of mind can come. So, I began to meditate. At first, for only five minutes, because that was all I could handle before becoming irritated, then I progressed to longer durations. The longer I sat the more my mind and heart aligned and spoke to me about what it needed. The mind is where my healing all began.
In 2006, a year after the birth of my first child, my eldest daughter was diagnosed with Celiac Disease, an autoimmune disease where the body cannot digest the protein in wheat, barley, and rye. One month later, I experienced severe pain in my head, weakness, numbness and severe exhaustion. It was so extreme that I was unable to carry my one-year-old daughter. All of these symptoms mirrored the symptoms I had experienced when I was 18 years old. I was taken to the hospital where my symptoms continued to worsen and I suffered from paralysis on one side of my body and loss of peripheral vision in one eye. I experienced extreme fatigue and small spots (lesions) were seen on a scan of my brain. I was told it was symptoms related to Multiple Sclerosis and was sent home and told to wait and see if it was just one isolated episode or to see if it would progress. For years I had experienced all the symptoms of MS but always just thought it was who I was.
When I came home to heal, I was like a woman with a great thirst and no water to be found. I researched anything I could find. Conventional medicine could not help and I wanted to know why I, a healthy young woman of 26 years of age, had an unexplained autoimmune disease, as well as my young one-year-old daughter. What I discovered in my research and self-experimentation is that food can heal if you follow the correct formula. It is science. And if science is true it can be repeated. In my discoveries, I found that while we are all the same species there are tweaks in our makeup that need to be considered when formulating a lifestyle that nurtures individuals. My conclusion was that while nutrition that healed and nurtured was the key component, positive thinking, and positive body movement went hand-in-hand with the totality of the healing. Through a Primal/Paleo diet, and now Ketogenic diet, meditation, yoga, dance, climbing, walks and other natural intuitive movements I healed fully. What I have also realized is that the formula will change and evolve with the seasons of our lives. The magic is in tuning in and listening to the stage of life we are in and adjusting to what we need. The only constant in the Universe is change, and we must change with it.
In 2007, I was introduced to Tapping (EFT) and integrated it into my meditation practice, as well as the lives of my children. Tapping, for those that have never heard of it, is an emotional form of acupressure that helps to release blocked energy through a practice of tapping meridian points in a specific sequenced pattern, along with key verbal phrases that help us go directly to the triggers the brain creates and release them to free the energy. This practice has been instrumental in my healing happening in such a short amount of time.
Over the past 20 years, I have developed a daily practice of meditation, intuitive movement, and holistic nutrition. Along the way, I have helped many heal themselves and gain strength, not just of the body but also of mind and soul. I have taught guided meditation and tapping to expecting mothers, those with PTSD, inner-city public school children, small group sizes, large events and one-on-one. I like to lead guided meditation intuitively, embracing many meditation practice forms, along with mantras and chanting. In addition to guided meditation in stillness, I also utilize Shinrin-Yoku (Walking Forest Meditation) to help those who may need moving meditation.
Another loving moving meditation tool I use for myself, and others, is DANCE. Currently, I am collaborating with dancers from around the world to create a dance company, Nomad Muuvs, which embodies dances from around the world mixed with rhythms and beats from around the world. All of it is steeped in primal movement, spiritual honoring and cultural traditions. It is a blending of cultural lines while also honoring the traditions of the culture and its people.
I am a vessel of energy and any obstacle I have met I have learned from. Life is ever evolving and ever changing. How we respond, how we process, how we receive and what we put back into the Universe is what helps us either to grow as a person or causes us to become stagnate and begin to wither, break and lose that energy of life. Just as the body must heal from illness, injury or trauma, so must also the mind and soul. It is vital to see all of it as one and not separate. For us to be successful, positive beings in this world we must find out what makes us tick and how we must heal so that our personal puzzle piece fits into the whole. We don't want to be a wet puzzle piece that is misshapen and broken, even when we have been dropped in the puddle of life. We can still be repaired by getting aired out and having our colors restored, but the longer the piece sits in the wet the longer it takes to dry and the vibrancy of the colors may take a long time to be restored.
My current philosophy is that one must Be Firm, But Kind with oneself especially in this time in my life of being a single mama to four children. The beauty and stillness can actually be found in the chaos. With vigilant awareness in love and action, we can experience true healing and the clarity to live from our Highest Self. And who would know us best other than ourselves? We are our own best healers and we already are everything we need. Living from that space is absolute love and freedom.