Name of Company: Lotus on the Nile
Location: Los Angeles, California
Owner: Kali Sampson Alexander
Specialization: Soulfully Bliss Yoga, Acupuncture, Massages, Herbal Medicine, Women's Health, Wholistic Workshops and Special Events around various wellness/fitness subjects
About the Owner: An excerpt taken from an article written in the LA Watts Times
by India Allen
. . . Owned by Dr. Kali Alexander, a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist, Lotus is a health and wellness center that offers "wholistic" services and products, including acupuncture, herbal consultations, and formulas tailored to individual needs. The center also offers an array of exercise and wellness classes, including yoga.
Like Lotus, Alexander has always been an anomaly of sorts. Born and raised in Lynwood, Alexander says her parents exposed her to things that were considered outside of the box. Her parents vowed never to limit their children's learning and life experiences.
"We were exposed not just to different religions but different ways of thinking," Alexander says.
Her upbringing provided an environment to develop her unconventional personality and tendency to question and challenge the status quo.
"The little free spirit thing I definitely had going on," Alexander says, laughing. "Even in high school, I decided that cheerleading was sexist, and I was the captain of the cheerleading team."
After high school, Alexander attended the University of California, Los Angeles, where she obtained a degree in economics. Because UCLA had such a strong black political history, it was a very good time to be a black student on that campus, says Alexander, who attended the university in the late 1980s and early '90s. Her experiences inspired her to travel to Cuba.
"I really wanted to meet Assata (Shakur) because she was there at the time," she says.
But after meeting Shakur — a former Black Panther Party member granted political asylum — Alexander's trip took an unexpected detour. While delivering medical supplies to various clinics, she came across a dentist who used hand acupuncture to numb isolated spots in her patient's mouth.
"When the dental procedure worked, I said, 'Oh, I got to know that,' " Alexander says. "I was so amazed."
Inspired, she returned to the states and enrolled at Emperor's Acupuncture College in Santa Monica. But as the saying goes: the road to success is not always straight and steady — and neither was Alexander's journey.
Toward the end of her five-year training, Alexander became pregnant with her first child and was dealt what seemed like a devastating blow at the time. Her mother was diagnosed with late-stage ovarian cancer.
"The doctor told me that she might have maybe six months (to live)," Alexander says. "I just couldn't accept it."
Not giving up, Alexander turned to a practitioner of Chinese medicine she had known, but during the third treatment, he encouraged her to treat her mother.
"He said to me, 'You know what to do; you just need to do it,' " Alexander says.
After that, she took the reigns, changed her mother's diet, coached her in meditative exercises, such as Qigong (Chi Gong) and even restricted certain people from visiting. It's been eight years now, and her mother remains cancer-free.
Alexander sees the whole ordeal as a "true blessing in disguise." She is in her groove professionally and spiritually, and married with three children: Khafre Seneb, 7; Kafara, 5; and Asenath, 4.