Jessica was born in Tokyo, Japan, to a Japanese mother and American father, both members of a cult called The Children of God (COG).
When Jessica was 5 years old she was separated from her sister, brother, and step dad. When she was 6 years old, her mother took her to a COG commune of 60 people, and left Jessica there on her own. She was denied contact with her mother because of “security reasons.” Having had no caregiver assigned to her, Jessica experienced tremendous abuse, bullying, and trauma, which continued on throughout her entire childhood.
Jessica was eventually reunited with the rest of her family, but never lived with them for long. (By the time Jessica was 10 years old, she had moved more than 15 times.) She was denied her childhood, a proper education, and core needs such as love, safety, privacy, and comfort. She was placed in fulltime jobs within the cult communes such as childcare at the age of 10, and cooking meals for up to 200 people at the age of 13 with one other person.
When Jessica was 16 years old, she had the opportunity to do volunteer work with slums, schools, and orphanages for 6 months in India, and for the first time she felt true fulfilment and purpose in life, and it was also the moment she realised what she wanted to do with her life, which was to help people.
At the age of 16 she left the cult with $30 in her pocket and nowhere to go but her night job teaching English (at an English conversation club). She had not been taught Japanese at a satisfactory level so jobs were limited. She stayed with a couple female friends from work, until she found her own place, while being denied any help from her parents who told her she’d made the decision to leave, so she was on her own.
Jessica had her first daughter at 17 years old.
When Jessica was 19 she married an ex cult member (whose father was a cult leader in Japan) and had her second daughter shortly after. Her husband was psychologically, emotionally, and physically abusive to her and her daughters, and after 4 1/2 years Jessica left him. Soon after, her husband told her she’d never see their 3 year old (younger) daughter again, withheld contact, and eventually took her to the US without her knowledge.
Currently, Jessica lives in Australia with two of her three daughters, and she was reunited in June, 2013 with her 12 year old daughter in the US whom she had not seen in 8 years.
Jessica is on her lifelong journey to self-love and acceptance, as she feels that it is the key to reaching her highest potential in order to empower and assist others in their own healing journey.
Some of Jessica’s dreams are to write a book about her personal healing journey, as well as to create a healing retreat for women and children and for low income earners who have escaped/experienced domestic violence. She feels it is imperative that people from all income backgrounds have access to a safe, rejuvenating, nurturing, therapeutic space, as well as ongoing support and resources in order to assist in recovery from traumatic and abusive histories.