Friday, March 29, 2019
Feel Good Friday - On Grace & Gratitude
As I have the blessing and good fortune to share my journey in interviews as I promote my latest book, "The Adventures of Runnergirl 1953," it's a wonderful opportunity for me to reflect on grace, gratitude and the miracle of healing in my life.
I experienced a touch of grace from an early age as I write about in "Adventures..."
As I lay paralyzed on the couch from the neck down, my mother glared at me while smoking a cigarette. I didn’t know why she couldn’t or wouldn’t care for me. I had to wait until my father or grandfather came home to get my basic needs met. I had a vision of a Being with a long flowing beard who extended a hand to me only there was no physical hand. This Being sent a well bucket for me to climb in, and, although I was paralyzed, I was able to step into the well bucket to be reeled up to meet this Being. I felt safe, at peace and happy. Somewhere inside of me I knew that I had to make a choice. In that moment I made a choice to return to my physical body. Movement returned to my right side. I wiggled around a little bit on the couch; enough movement to hold my story book. Everywhere I looked whether my eyes were open or closed and even in my story book, I saw this Being. I had my guardian angel to help me through.
For years I felt resentment, anger and guilt about what I considered having been dealt a crummy hand of cards. But after the diagnosis of Post-Polio Syndrome, after I got still and asked for Divine Guidance, I realized that in order to heal my life I needed to be thankful for the challenges that I experienced. Bernie Siegel was a wonderful coach to me during this time as he had been since I knew him in the 1980's.
From "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems To Heal Your Life":
One could say I was dealt a hand of crummy cards to play
at first blush I would have to agree
bluffing became my way of life
playing my cards close to my chest
do I continue to play or fold?
The stakes were high
I could no longer up the ante
living on the edge
waiting to find freedom only in death
every day a living death
something had to give
releasing fear by experiencing fear
losing self consciousness
opening my heart.
I bet everything I had
riding on hope, faith and a prayer
“I’m all in”
putting my cards on the table
there it was
a royal flush!
Through harnessing the power of the mind/body connection connecting to Divine Intelligence within me I have been able to:
Dissolve a breast tumor that was most likely malignant
Heal a lesion on my nose that was skin cancer
Dissolve bone spurs, fatty lipoma, reverse degenerative changes, grow new cartilage and a new gastroc muscle on my left leg
Rewire my neuromuscular system healing the effects of paralytic polio visualizing the Divine as my Master Electrician
Run the Boston Marathon after being told to prepare to spend the rest of my life in a wheelchair
Dissolve bone spurs and resolve a disc pressing on my nerve at C-6 in my cervical spine no longer needing injections to relieve this condition
I came upon the work of Mitchell May and used his mantra for healing "I am a child of God. This is easy for God to heal." I practiced Emile Coue's mantra that he gave to us patients in the 1800's, "Every day in every way I'm getting better and better!"
I continue to heal the effects of paralytic polio and trauma and whatever comes up as an active 65 year old. Through a touch of grace and serendipity I found my to Dr. Lizzie Sobel, chiropractor with whom I have partnered on this journey for almost two years. Just last week I felt new connections to my left leg and am able to feel more balanced with diminishing the risk for an overuse injury on my right leg and side. Imagine that ... after 60 years, my body continues to heal and transform. And to think "they said" if I use it I will lose it and prepare to spend the rest of my life in a wheelchair. "They" believe that polio survivors age at an accelerated rate taxing the already overtaxed muscles and nerves compromised by the polio virus. "They" need to learn more about neuroplasticity and the body's tremendous capacity to heal!
I am blessed and grateful to my partner Tom who I met through the grace on a blind date 42 years ago. He told me that it was a "no brainer" when I was diagnosed and said that I should quit my job so I could heal my life in May 2007. At the time I had no idea what that meant and I was terrified to take that leap of faith but leap I did. Whenever we needed money, it came to us.
Speaking of money and signs...After the twins were born, we were charging formula and diapers. Our savings had been used during unplanned bed rest for 6 weeks. We lived on one income during a recession. One day I decided that I was going to embody abundance and got dressed to the nines and took the twins in our double stroller to Bloomingdale's. There on the floor was a $20 bill! When I ran out of money for graduate school to complete my last semester, Tom and I 'just happened' to be watching the news when Paula Lyons, a consumer reporter for Channel 5 talked about a new student loan program, MEFA. I went to the Financial Aid Office at Boston College and got the money I needed to finish my MSW.
We are blessed to now experience abundance and a very comfortable lifestyle having weathered many financial crises.
Every day I practice an attitude of gratitude.
When life presents challenges which it invariably will, I get still and ask for Divine Guidance. Through my regular meditation practice, I am better able to take a pause, get my bearings and maintain equanimity in the face of chaos.
While I have been to hell and back in my life, I have been blessed with the gifts of grace and gratitude to embrace the challenges and transform them while gleaning the soul lessons I need to be my highest, brightest and best self. I am blessed and grateful that I can share my challenges and the miracles I have co-created in my life to inspire others!
To hear my interview with Frankie Picasso, follow this link.
You can hear my interview with Bernie Siegel by following this link.
If you subscribe to Hay House Radio, you can hear my interview with Dr. David Hamilton by following this link.
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.