Resounding cheers, whistles and clapping reverberate through the room. Two hundred eager women turn and nod to each other, grinning broadly and craning their necks to catch glimpses of the speakers taking to the stage: Tara Bliss, Jess Ainscough, Melissa Ambrosini and Amanda Rootsey take to the stage – AKA ‘The Party Girls Guide to Peace’, ‘The Wellness Warrior’, ‘Path to Wellness’ and ‘Shine from Within’, respectively.
These four names are not only synonymous with the wellness movement in Australia, they are ‘miracle makers’ according to Yvette Luciano, (very proud) founder and director of Earth Events. Yvette is the mastermind of the debut tour which ended in Melbourne. It’s been an overwhelming experience of inspiration and empowerment for all involved.
Mind you, this is an event with a twist. Gone are the rows of champagne normally adorning waiters’ trays with bite-sized canapés at every turn. In its place are tables laden with organic coconut water, herbal tea, organic chocolate and water. These girls are advocates of converting to a healthy lifestyle. The benefits of which clearly emanate in their radiant faces. Each had a story to tell.
Melissa spoke about feeling unhappy as an actress, suffering from eating disorders and depression. She had a wake up call four years ago after getting a cold sore virus and ending up in hospital. Melissa’s mum handed her a Louise Hay book and from that point her life started changing. Saying to herself ‘I created this, I can change it’. Her mantra is ‘start with self-love, work your self-love muscle!’
In 2008, Amanda was modelling overseas and burning the candle at both ends. This soon changed when she found a lump on her neck at 24. When the results came in, she bawled her eyes out. It was Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. After researching online she decided to simplify her life by turning vegan, meditating and treating it naturally for a year by living off the grid. Now in remission, Amanda teaches classes to teenage girls about self-image and self-love.
Jess lived a party life working at Dolly magazine as a socials reporter, drinking champagne at 3-4 parties every week and getting wasted on the weekends. “It was a toxic environment & competitive, all about how you look”, she says. At 22, she was diagnosed with a rare and incurable cancer and was told “there’s nothing we can do for you, we need to amputate your arm”. With a 50% chance of surviving in five years, Jess embraced Gerson Therapy. This included hourly juicing and a completely organic diet, five coffee enemas a day and castor oil every second day for two years. Jess recalls how the first year was so tough; she hated all her friends and had many, many pity parties.
Tara shared her story tearfully, musing how only 3 years ago she was a massive chameleon who would do anything to escape the person that she was. In high school she hid behind the ‘jock’ label and moved out of home at 16. Being tall enough to buy alcohol, she soon became a party girl at 17. Hairdressing by day and bar-tending by night, Tara would escape on 3-4 day benders. It wasn’t until she travelled the world snowboarding with her partner Glen that Tara had a chance moment in Canada when she thought “I feel alive right now”. Her move to wellness did not have a defining moment, more “a gentle, but stubborn thing pulling at my heart”.
The panel agreed that self-love and sisterhood is about being gentle with yourself and finding your tribe – your “constant companions” who share your happiness.
Melissa summed up the discussions well. “Every single person is on their own journey. People have to experience whatever they have to experience. Be the example’, she says.
And just as we started, resounding cheers, whistles and clapping reverberate through room. 200 eager women turn and nod to each other, grinning broadly and affirming how we too will now practice self-love and relish our sisterhood.
To find out more about Earth Events, visit www.earthevents.com.au.