Last night I dreamed that I returned to see Dr. Darren Rosenberg at the International Rehab Center for Polio. I was in a running bra and shorts. He asked me about my solid abs and asked me what that was all about and I told him I was going to run the Boston Marathon. He said, 'you're going to run the Boston Marathon?' and then he began to take out every imaginable instrument to measure leg length, leg strength, joint flexibility and strength and tested me every which way. After the exam he declared, "well, I see absolutely no evidence of post polio syndrome."
I had a dream several months ago about the surgeon, Dr. Donald Reilly who performed a femur osteotomy on my left leg to correct a deformity from polio and to try to avert a total knee replacement when I was 40 years old. He 'guaranteed' the osteoarthritic knee for 10 years. I was supposed to have surgery but when I came out of the recovery room, I realized that there was no incision. He stood in the corner of the recovery room in his starched white coat with his hands over his characteristic pot belly and said, 'you don't need surgery. Your knees are fine. You'll make it through the marathon.'
Just as my unconscious had predicted me running through the gift of poetry although I was in a brace and using a cane , these dreams reassure me that despite all that has happened to my body, it is more than ready to undertake the challenge of the Boston Marathon. My past does not predict my future; I am able to create positive outcomes in my life through constant connection with God and incredibly hard work.
So it is time to express gratitude to the amazing healing angels that have been brought into my life beginning with Dr. Moskowitz, my first polio doctor; Miss Holly, my first physical therapist; Dr. Reilly who saw me through multiple orthopedic surgeries and Eric, physical therapist at the Brigham who worked with Dr. Reilly; The entire staff at the International Rehab Center for Polio - Anna Rubin who was so loving and supportive during my first phone call, Dr. Rosenberg, Carol B whose last name I can't spell or pronounce but who helped me reclaim my voice, my breath and my ability to swallow, Kerry Blossfeld - the physical therapist and Laura Ryan, the Occupational Therapist who listened as I cried and shared my worst fears and burdens with her; Allison Poole physical therapist at Spaulding downtown with whom I worked for 6 months in intensive outpatient rehab - what can I say? Your positivity, support, encouragement and wonderful sense of humor helped me to transform from weak, and deconditioned to the endurance athlete I am today. (I may not be fast, but I sure am strong and steady). Janine Hightower, www.bostonhomebodies.com - a personal trainer who is so exceptional - your skill, support, toughness, tenderness and belief that with God all things ARE possible have brought me out of a leg brace and to the starting line of the Boston Marathon.Janice Wesley - energy healer, friend, Yoda - thank you - simply thank you for bringing me ever closer to God and in taking my hand to move forward as a light bearer.
I am so grateful for my beautiful family whose love and support through this process has been the fuel to keep me on the road to the Boston Marathon. I am also incredibly grateful for the community of runners I have met on www.justfinish.com and for the friends I have made through Twitter who embrace my journey and encourage me to keep on keeping on, and to all the runners I have met at the many events I have been blessed to participate in.
To purchase my book of inspirational poetry which helps to support Spaulding Rehab's polio fund and to enter a new world of greeting cards, log onto www.newworldgreetings.com.
To donate to Team McManus on their road to the Boston Marathon, log onto www.firstgiving.com/teammcmanus.
God bless & see you at the finish line,