It’s like coming to your best friend’s house, where you can walk around barefoot, get a hug if you need one, and be yourself completely.
That is how Heidi Seastrand describes Firefly Haven, a new urban healing retreat in Arroyo Grande.
“I want people to feel like they’ve found the home they’ve always been looking for—a place where they can feel more confident and in love with themselves,” Seastrand, the owner of the center, said.
- IMAGE BY HEIDI SEASTRAND
- PLACE TO HEAL: Heidi Seastrand wants clients to feel like they have found a home away from home at Firefly Haven.
The haven offers alternative therapies ranging from acupuncture, massages, and essential oil treatments to chakra balancing and neuro-feedback therapy. According to Seastrand, such services can transform the lives of people suffering from physical or mental problems like learning difficulties or anxiety.
“It’s a whole new paradigm of dealing with mental health issues and physical pain,” she said. “It gives you a different way of looking at reality.”
Seastrand ran Life Transformations Healing Studio in San Luis Obispo for nearly a decade and had been looking to expand her business for a long time. Two years ago, a car accident on her commute from Grover Beach became the catalyst for finding a place closer to home. She got together a group of alternative therapy practitioners, acquired a former flower shop in Arroyo Grande, and held a grand opening in March.
Now, she’s Madame Firefly to everyone who visits the retreat.
The idea to name the healing center after the little beetles with light-up bellies came to her in a meditation.
“Firefly Haven comes from knowing you have your own light to shine but needing a place to restore it—a place to transform your mind and heal your soul,” she said.
Seastrand believes in the therapies offered at the center because she used them to heal herself. She grew up with dyslexia and undiagnosed ADHD, which made school difficult. Then, after a kayaking accident at age 26 left her in chronic pain, she found herself in a very dark place.
“I was heavily medicated and really on the brink of suicide,” she said.
When she found alternative therapies, the discovery was transformative for her healing process. She describes it as getting braces for the brain. After earning a master’s degree in clinical psychology, she decided to learn as much as she could about alternative healing.
“My mission was to first heal myself and then use the tools I learned to help others,” she said.
And help people is what Seastrand aims to do at Firefly Haven, ideally providing each client with the tools to heal as quickly as possible.
“I like to go in and do a quick makeover of someone’s life, so I usually work with people for about a season,” she said
Beyond the healing services offered inside Firefly Haven, Seastrand hopes to create a strong community feeling by developing the area outside it. Outdoor movie nights happen one Monday a month behind the retreat, and down the line she hopes to create a space for musical appearances out front.
“My hope and intention is to bring a bit of a new culture to Arroyo Grande,” she said.
Firefly Haven is located at 1355 E. Grand Ave. in Arroyo Grande. For more information about Firefly Haven, visit fireflyhaven.com or call Seastrand for a free consultation at 295-9417.
For anyone stressed about Independence Day festivities, San Luis Obispo yoga studio m.BODY offers a stress-free way to start the celebrations in their two-hour yoga class from 9 to 11 a.m. on July 4. The class is open to all experience levels, and participation costs $15. For registration or more information, visit mbodyslo.com or call 547-9642.
Intern Anna Hoernell wrote this week’s Strokes and Plugs. Send your business and nonprofit news to firstname.lastname@example.org.