Sunday, June 8, 2014

It's a Shame!

It's a shame how much time is wasted on feeling shame.

The polio vaccine had just been made available but the climate of fear and panic about polio remained. Polio was associated with being unclean and there was a tremendous energy of shame that became associated with the disease. Ironically enough, there was a high incidence of polio in areas where there was clean water and more affluence because children did not have the opportunity to be exposed to the polio virus and develop a natural immunity to the disease.

Because my family was rather, shall we say, fragile to say the least, they could not nurture and support me back to physical, emotional and spiritual health.

Polio, incest, suicide, drug addiction and alcoholism were the conditions that created a perfect storm for shame to become a part of who I was.

After my nephew's suicide in March 2011, I realize how much feelings of shame drove me to make choices and be in relationships that fueled my battle with shame. They were on the surface relationships of caring and support while underneath there was the message of you're not good enough as you are. We can help you change and become something better; a pattern of pulling me in and casting me out.

It was all a part of the journey so that I could arrive here in this moment. I can feel at peace and feel joy with who I am in mind, body and Spirit. Of course the Truth of who we are in Spirit is pure Love, joy, compassion and gratitude.

I feel tremendous compassion for myself and all that I lived through. Now that I am clearing the energy of shame from my life, it is easier to extend feelings of compassion to others especially those whose lives have been touched by mental illness, addiction, incest, suicide or any of the life experiences that are often considered "taboo" and can become a breeding ground for shame.

I can take my place at a starting line not knowing if I will be the last to cross the finish line. I run my personal best. When once I felt so much shame in my leg brace and in gym class, I carried that with me to many starting lines. Now I am able to celebrate that I am at the starting line, running with heart, doing my best with what I've got. I am proud to be out there running and living feeling the miracle of my life.

It's a shame to feel any other way about my life.

My memoir, "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility" is now available on Amazon.

"Wait, I have one more goal," Mary McManus told her personal trainer in February of 2008 shortly after coming out of her toe up leg brace. "I want to run the Boston Marathon for Spaulding Rehab Hospital." Mary traded in her polio shoes for running shoes and embarked on the journey of a lifetime. Mary McManus was at the height of her career as a VA social worker when she was told by her team at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital’s International Rehab Center for Polio in December of 2006 that she needed to quit her job if she had any hope of preventing the progression of post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease. In “Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility” Mary takes you on her seven year healing odyssey as a survivor of paralytic polio and trauma from her diagnosis, to taking a leap of faith to leave her award winning career at the VA to heal her life and follow her passion as a poet and writer. You’ll experience her trials, tribulations and triumphs as she trains for and crosses the finish line of the 2009 Boston Marathon and discovers the opportunity for healing in the wake of new trauma: the suicide of her nephew in 2011, and the aftermath of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings. This is Mary's journey of coming home to her human form free from the influences of the ghastly ghostly invaders who had invaded her sacred earthly home. Her memoir includes journals and blog posts from her seven year healing odyssey. This is her journey of transformation and her message of healing, hope and possibility.

I donate 50% of royalty payments through on line sales to The One Fund to help Boston Marathon survivors and their families. Copies are also available at Brookline Marathon Sports. $5 of each book sold at Marathon Sports is donated to The One Fund.

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