Wanja Michuki hasn’t updated her busy 2017 vision board. There are quotes (fight for the fairytale, it does exist) and a picture of a private jet with three executives and an empty chair.
“That’s my chair,” she taps on the picture.
She’s a certified coach, a writer, speaker and a private wealth management consultant.
At the Engage forum (a bi-monthly platform of fascinating thinkers and minds) she spoke about being sexually abused as a child to a hushed audience.
At her quaint backyard in a gated home off Kiambu Road, she talks about the intelligence of nature, fulfilment, ancestry, her father (the late John Michuki) as her two beautiful young dogs howl in the background.
She’s got an air of calm and content around her. But she was never like this when she was an analyst at Barclays #ticker:BBK, founder of the defunct Highlands Tea and a stint in the government — trade and investment. She had tea with JACKSON BIKO.
How do you fill your days in a place like this?
This is where I do my coaching because I love the intelligence of nature. Basically, I deal with people who are working on career objectives; executives, managers. I have worked with people who want to get promoted, are trying to create a new role in their organisation, they don’t know how to go about doing it. I look at people’s elements of life and help them create fulfilment for them. I help you with the big picture. I also do yoga and meditate.
When you think of your late parents, what are the emotions that bubble to the surface?
Joy, happiness, love. I think enough time has passed where it’s not the sadness, you know, as the first thing.
What did you learn about politics from growing up in a political family?
We were always upcountry in Kangema and it was great. I think this is where my whole pull to make a difference came from because he (John Michuki) would always be sorting our issues in the village. It exposed me to many types of social issues. I learnt that to be a really good politician, you truly have to have a vision and values. My father was a good politician, but more importantly he was a divine leader, serving, drawing on the divine masculine energy.
In what space do you find yourself most insecure?
(Long pause) When I am around people that I don’t know and people that I don’t necessarily like. Gossipy scenes make me feel really insecure. I feel insecure around monkeys. (Laughs) and they know it, which sometimes make my time at Karura forest interesting. Mobs make me insecure.
Poverty, ideally means lacking or insufficient in amount, scarcity or absence. What’s your poverty? How are you poor?
(Long pause) I am not. I am really fulfilled because I am doing what I know I am here to do. That for me is everything. There was a time when I was sort of chasing a societal norm and I felt so empty inside because I was applying myself to just doing something that truly is not my purpose.
If you believe in reincarnation what would you come back as?
Myself. (Laughs) But I would wish to start from where I am in life today, not the beginning. I have had such a colourful life and I realise every single thing that I have been through adds up to this moment.
For instance, if I hadn’t been sexually abused as a child I’m not so sure I’d be on this path. I’m not so sure I’d have sort of become so spiritually curious or curious about my ancestry. I don’t think I would have studied the human being so much and gone into trying to understand the soul and purpose. It’s funny, but I look back and I’m like ‘I’m grateful for all of it’. You know?
When was the last time you cried?
(Pause) the 1st or the 2nd of this year.
What made you cry?
I missed my parents. I’d also been waiting to have a big cry. (Laughs) I have these moments where I’m like I know that I need a good cry, a good release. I think it’s also because this last year has been momentous. My Engage talk was also a very big deal, a huge emotional release, telling a very personal story and having a lot of feedback to that story.
What’s your language of love?
(Long pause) Eye contact. (Laughs) I think eyes communicate so much and in a space of love, eyes can communicate tenderness.
Are you an eye reader?
Eyes are like the windows into the soul I believe that.
Can you read my eyes?
(Hard stare) Right now, you are probably thinking this is incredulous. You are like, ‘yeah, yeah, yeah.’ (Laughs).
Have you been to Eastlands part of Nairobi?
No. I haven’t. But I imagine it to be busy and buzzing.
Do you believe in evil?
Yes. I do.
When was the last time you saw evil?
(Long pause) Probably the last time I read the newspapers. There was a lot of it.
Are you ever going to fill this beautiful house with children?
I don’t think so. I think my work is where I am going to spend the rest of my life, time and energy. If I have children, I won’t be able to do it. Children are a responsibility and it will be a distraction and because I do believe in reincarnation, I say maybe next life I might.
But next life you are coming back as you, remember?
Yeah, but I said, if I start here… (Laughs) You know this place gets filled with people who are coming in and out to heal and I don’t think I went through, for instance, the childhood sexual abuse for nothing. I love when birthing happens here, when someone has a shift. That suffices for me.
Is your decision not to have children in any way connected to your trauma as a child?
(Pause) It could be. (Pause) Part of. (Pause) I don’t know...I don’t know. I don’t know if that biological clock urge that to me is to friends and other women I know, it could be... Quite a number of women I know who have gone through abuse don’t have children and it could be. I wouldn’t rule that out. Look, I think I have handled that part of my life, it has come with lessons which have informed who I am now. All of it is a part of me and I am a part of it. I don’t have nightmares about it. I slayed that monster of shame. (Laughs)
I like that. So dramatic, so Game of Thrones.
Seriously. And I love working with people to slay whatever their monsters are. People have all sorts of monsters. That’s what I birth.