Sunday, February 17, 2019

On Earth Angels and Gratitude

The beauty of writing my memoir, "The Adventures of Runnergirl 1953" was it gave me a wonderful opportunity to reflect on the earth angels who appeared in my life and to connect the dots to reveal a wondrous and miraculous tapestry of my life.

From the time I was 5 years old, I was blessed to connect with my guardian angel after contracting paralytic polio. My guardian angel sent many earth angels to guide me through recovery from polio and to help me hold steady through an intensely traumatic childhood and adolescence. Looking back I experienced the profound influence on my life from my physiatrist, physical therapist and a camp counselor. They planted the seeds for possibility, courage, faith and resilience that would hold me in good stead throughout my life.

After the diagnosis of Post-Polio Syndrome in December of 2006, a cascade of earth angels flowed into my life to lend a hand to lift me up out of the dark night of my mind, body and soul.

When this most unlikely runner found her way to the sport of running, I was embraced by the community of runners and race directors. With their love and support, I was able to run my race at my pace as I once visualized in the first poem I wrote, "Running the Race."

Using wheelchair to travel, set limits on what I could do,
Resulted in joy to realize I could live life anew.
Celebrated my body- creaks, groans and need for a brace
While in my mind I focused on winning a 10K race.
Sought out paths for healing and my spirit flew free
For the first time in life, I could truly be me.
The chains are gone and possibilities abound
I'm a tree with my roots planted firmly in ground.
I'm now off the sidelines, no need to sit and whine
So much gratitude fills my heart and love and beauty shine.
After all these years I can join the loving human race
I exceed all expectations and now I set the pace.

So much gratitude fills my heart as I share with you the Dedication and Acknowledgements from "The Adventures of Runnergirl 1953":

This book is lovingly dedicated to:

My husband Tom who has been by my side stride for stride for over 40 years. Here’s to many many more adventures to come….

The earth angels who brought a touch of grace to my life and helped me to overcome my challenges.

My village who embrace me and surround me with unconditional love cheering me on to go the distance on the roads and in my life.

To anyone who was given a diagnosis and told what their limits would be….Remember you are not your diagnosis…You have the power within you to heal!

With deepest gratitude to Anthony Raynor for giving me an invitational entry to the Bermuda Half Marathon 2018. It gave me the opportunity of a lifetime to know that I am healthy, whole and healed.

Thank you to Race Directors Dave McGillivray, Paulie Collyer and Alain Ferry for giving me the opportunity to run my race at my pace.

Thank you to all the mind/body luminaries who lit the spark that led me out of the dark night of my mind, body and soul and led me into the light of how life is meant to be lived.

Every time I hit the wall in my healing journey, a door opened to possibility that catapulted me back on my healing path.

When our heart is open and filled with gratitude despite or maybe because of the challenges that are placed before us, miracles happen with earth angels to light the way.

To your health and wellness
From my heart to yours

Be sure to visit my website by following this link.

My books are available on Amazon.

“The Adventures of Runnergirl 1953” takes you on Mary McManus’ healing odyssey from a wheelchair to the finish line of the 2009 Boston Marathon and beyond. After the diagnosis of Post-Polio Syndrome in December 2006, Mary got still and asked for Divine Guidance tapping into the powerful connection she experienced to the Divine from an early age. She harnessed the power of her mind to heal her body, feverishly writing poetry in which she imagined herself healthy, whole and free from the shackles of her youth. Mary’s quest to heal her life led her to the sport of running. Her story is one that will leave you cheering for the underdog, discovering the meaning of different ability and experiencing the stunning view from the back of the pack of a race. You will have the privilege of bearing witness to how Mary overcame every challenge that life presented to her. The sport of running provides the backdrop for her journey of transformation from a survivor of childhood paralytic polio and severe trauma at the hands of family members to a woman who embodies faith, grace under fire, courage, determination, endurance and resilience. Running became a way of life for Mary that tested her mettle while forging friendships to last a lifetime. As you’ll discover in “The Adventures of Runnergirl 1953” nothing, not even a serious knee injury in December of 2014 could stop her on the roads or in her life.

Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life

Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing Hope and Possibility that chronicles the first 7 years of my healing journey:

Going the Distance: The Power of Endurance (With a Foreword by Jacqueline Hansen):

My healing journey using the power of visualization is featured in David R. Hamilton's book, "How Your Mind Can Heal Your Body-Anniversary Edition." It's available on Amazon.

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