Thursday, November 14, 2019
Thirteen years ago I could barely climb the stairs in my house, experienced chronic fatigue and pain, and had no idea what was going on with me mind, body and soul. The limp from when I contracted paralytic polio at the age of 5 returned. I felt as though my life was spiraling out of control despite being at the top of my career as an award winning social worker at the VA.
I found the courage to google Post Polio Syndrome and reached out to the International Rehab Center for Polio and Post-Polio at Spaulding Rehab. I underwent a series of tests since Post-Polio Syndrome is a diagnosis of exclusion. In December the diagnosis was confirmed and in January of 2007 I met a physical therapist who was an angel in my life. She believed in the body's tremendous capacity to heal and told me that I was NOT destined to spend the rest of my life in a wheelchair as the medical community understood would happen with Post-Polio Syndrome at the time.
In October of 2007 I was led to another earth angel, personal trainer Janine Hightower, who quoted Henry Ford. "Whether you think you can or you think you can't you're right."
I thought that I could run the 2009 Boston Marathon despite never having run a day in my life! She agreed and in April of 2008 I discovered the sport of running.
Running is so much more than lacing up a pair of shoes and going outside to put in miles.
Running is a way to leave stress behind:
Running is a great way to forge friendships that last through the decades:
We celebrate our triumphs and uplift each other through the inevitable trials and tribulations of life.
Running is my therapy that fueled my journey of transformation from being a survivor of paralytic polio to a woman who discovered her strength, resilience and beauty on the roads and in my life:
Running is getting up early to have together time unplugged savoring the seasons in New England even on a gray foggy day:
Running is a way to challenge myself and exceed all limitations opening the door to possibilities having comeback after comeback:
Running is a way to move forward on the roads and in life:
Running is a magnificent way to be a part of a larger community:
and is a way to be celebrated as though you finished first even though you're last:
Running is a way to experience magic:
The obsession with running is, as Dr. George Sheehan said:
Running is finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow-a spectacular scene from one of our early morning runs a few weeks ago:
Running is...you fill in the blank!
You can read all about my journey of transformation from the diagnosis of Post-Polio Syndrome to the finish line of the 2009 Boston Marathon and beyond in my Trilogy of Transformation available on Amazon and feel the heal in my anthology of inspirational poetry.
To your health and wellness - from my heart to yours
Be sure to visit my website at www.marymcmanus.com to learn more about my inspirational journey and for healing resources.
Kendra Petrone and I talked about my healing journey before the 2019 Boston Marathon on her award winning Exceptional Women Show. Listen by following this link.