Oakland scholar uses past trauma as tool for community healing
OAKLAND -- All human beings have experienced trauma at some point in their lives, but not everyone asked themselves to take a step back, and shift focus to others, and what they may be going through.
Nchedochukwu Ezeokoli has shifted their focus, by making their community's healing an opportunity for change.
When Ezeokoli looks to their future, joy is on the horizon.
"The joy for me right now is creating a reality that is aligned to my freedom," explained Ezeokoli.
It's a freedom that has brought with it self-realization and love.
"I discovered my queerness, and more parts of myself that felt more true than what I had known before,' shared Ezeokoli. "I am transgender, non-binary and I am also want you to know neurodivergent."
It's a journey that has also included many firsts for Ezeokoli. They've started a new business, and recently relocated from the Mid-West Hawaii.
They've also begun a much needed period of healing.
"Healing and liberation from pain, wounds, trauma," said Ezeokoli. "The past that keeps folks stuck, feeling stuck and not living in the alignment with their truth."
Living in their truth has at times been a long and difficult journey for the 29 year old.
"Complex childhood trauma'" said Ezeokoli of their journey. " I experienced all the mental, emotional and physical abuse from the ones who were meant to take care of me and raise me"
Bullying from within their community also etched a deep hurt.
"All of that combined has led to carrying a lot of core wounds and pain inside where I felt like I was disconnected from myself," explained Ezeokoli.
Reconnecting to themselves and others brought opportunities for the Nigerian born Stanford University and Emory University graduate. Study abroad programs included stints volunteering overseas.
And as Ezeokoli's future career plans came into focus, being a medical doctor, once a big goal, was no longer a consideration.
"I didn't want to be a medical doctor," said Ezeokoli. " I wanted to do something else with my life."
Ezeokoli's discoveries have fueled freedom, self-acceptance and a new career path. Last year they co-founded Healing 4 Liberation, a virtual healing studio that offers coaching, on-line courses, workshops and consulting.
"This is the work that I was meant to do, that my soul signed up for," declared Ezeokoli. "Otherwise all that I went through is pointless."
Reiki, mindfulness and meditation are integrated with personal experience, along with Ezeokoli's heart to help others who are also hurting.
Ezeokoli says their goal is continued healing for everyone, including the healer.
"They can do it too," Ezeokoli said about others in pain. "We deserve to cultivate joy in our lives. Our past doesn't have to define our future."
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