The Spark!
Transformation Magazine|November 2016

Learning to Put the past where it belongs-in the past.

Jo Pat Ozambela

My name is Jo Pat Ozambela. I’m a 50-year-old suburban housewife living in Austin, TX, with my husband of 19 years and our 15-year-old daughter. I have a great marriage, a beautiful, academically gifted child, a lovely limestone home in a sought-after neighborhood, a healthy, slim body… you get the picture. It seems that I have it all and that I’ve been blessed by the gods. One would never imagine that at 10 years old I witnessed the murder of my mother and sister by my sister’s husband, who then committed suicide. Nor would you guess that I struggled for years with drug and alcohol abuse, an eating disorder, sexual recklessness, depression, and anxiety.

I’m always flattered by this question because for so long I considered myself “damaged goods.” Really, I considered myself an abomination. Now I’m seen as well-adjusted and normal? Wow! It blows my mind every time, although I’m certainly aware that I have changed.

The answer to this question can be lengthy, for it’s been a long and tumultuous journey; one that I’m still on and that I will always be on. Ideally, we all continue to evolve until the day we die. However, in order to give a concise answer, I point back to a time in my early 20s when I experienced “the spark” that led to significant change in my life. It was a revelation!

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