Sometimes, it’s about more than just the music. At least one Lightning in a Bottle attendee looked to find happiness and rejuvenation, in addition to an incredible lineup at this year’s event. In December, 2013, Stephanie Stearns was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia, or AML. She had only recently given birth to her son, Tyler (photo above). The disease is crippling; attacking bone barrow tissue that’s used to create white blood cells and regulate the body’s immune system. It can manifest itself in painfully uncomfortable ways, including severe bruising, extreme fatigue, and shortness of breath. Nothing was going to stop Stephanie from attending 2015’s Lightning in a Bottle. For some, this is a place to explore life’s extremes, but for others, like Stephanie, this is a place of healing.

Stephanie started attending electronic music events in the late ’90s. Like most veteran ravers, for Stephanie, the parties aren’t about abusing her body anymore, but about existentialism, purity, exploration, and altruism. Scattered across Lighting in a Bottle were several popular non-musical installations including Sound Meditation, Essential Oils Wizardry, Pineal Playground, and Sound Baths. Above all else, Stephanie found healing in the time spent with her son, now 3-years-old, and watching him dance all throughout the festival. The idea of ‘PLUR’ has been criticized, eulogized, and forgotten about throughout the electronic music culture, but it’s not gone. Pockets of peace, love, unity, and respect still bring people together. The music is enough, but it’s also about the people – each individual person – and sometimes, an individual like Stephanie, reminds us why we keep coming back.

Source: LA Weekly