Friday, July 31, 2015

Believing is Seeing: Patience, Persistence and Parking Spaces



On Mondays and Thursdays I go to WaveHealth Fitness for swimming and massage. I tell myself that I will always find a metered or handicapped parking space. The one Monday I did not find a parking space, I had conversations which the Universe wanted and needed me to have which would not have happened if I would have found a metered or a handicapped parking space. Now one word about using my handicap placard ... I see it is a Universe Residential Parking Permit. Being able to park and not worry about feeding the meter is a wonderful gift that I accept with a grateful heart.

There used to be many more parking spaces in the Seaport area. Meters have been covered and construction took away a whole row of parking spaces. When there are concerts at the Bank of America Pavillion, parking spaces are at a premium. Yet despite this apparent lack of abundance of parking spaces, I see things differently.

Yesterday as I was driving around looking for a parking space before my appointment with Jeff at Spratt Muscular Therapies, I saw people pulling out of parking spaces and then another car pulling right up and taking the space a few feet in front of me. This happened several times and I just kept repeating my mantra, there is an abundance of parking spaces. I drove down different streets I usually don't drive down looking for parking widening my search.

A car pulls out across the street but just after I had turned around another car was ready to take its place.

I did not relent in my belief and stayed calm and connected to the Source of all things. I knew that there was a reason this was happening. Reading Candace Pert's book, "Everything you need to know to feel Go(o)d" reminds me of this important message over and over again.

A car pulls out on the other side of the street. I do my U turn and just as I thought someone else had pulled into it, it appeared before my very eyes. It was big enough for a mac truck. I parked and said thank you out loud to the Universe. I noticed something very important about how I was feeling. I felt a deep sense of appreciation for the space because I had to wait for it and experience faith and trust without seeing any evidence that there was an abundance of parking spaces; quite the opposite.



My whole journey during these past 8+ years has been about faith, patience and persistence. I had a lot of soul lessons to learn as I walked a long and winding road to where I am today.

And despite all appearances to the contrary especially after my knee injury last December, I know that total healing is now mine to claim.

Just like I knew I needed to be patient and persistent and not pull into a paid parking lot yesterday, I knew and know that I need to be patient and persistent with my healing. I must say though there is a lot of momentum happening now as I partner with Jeff, keep a regular meditation schedule with Tom, keep a mindful eye on my thoughts and choices and work out with the utter belief and conviction that I have completely healed. I am a runner. I run unencumbered. I run swift and I run a 12:00 minute mile. I have a whole healthy strong left leg healed from polio and surgeries. I have a strong, healthy and vibrant neural net that is nourished by good food, good thoughts and my training. I feel incredible joy and gratitude to know that believing is seeing and the Universe is orchestrating this beautiful symphony we call life.




I chronicle the first 7 years of my healing journey after being diagnosed with post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease as a survivor of childhood paralytic polio and 9 years of childhood domestic violence in Coming Home:A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility.


In Journey Well, the journey continues in the wake of my nephew's suicide on 3/4/11 and the events of 4/15/13. Through my journey of healing and transformation, we learn that no matter what life circumstances happen to us, we can always find a way to journey well.


"Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems," my latest collection of inspirational poetry is now available soon on Amazon

Thursday, July 30, 2015

My Running Chronicles: Synchronicity



Synchronicity is a concept created by psychiatrist Carl Jung, which holds that events are "meaningful coincidences" if they occur with no apparent causal relationship, yet seem to be meaningfully related.

Candace Pert
wrote in her book, 'Everything you need to know to feel Go(o)d' that Deepak Chopra told her that the more you meditate, the more you will notice and experience synchronicity happening in your life.

On Saturday as we came to the end of our 5.5 mile training run for the Bermuda Marathon Weekend,


I visualized the finish as we were coming up on our final hill. I was totally there and I created the scene for Tom. I told him who is going to be at the finish line including Vince Cann, Sundown and Kirk Dill who were members of the Blue Waters Anglers Club who we knew when we went to the Island and when they'd come up here to Falmouth to compete against Boston's Sea and Surf Anglers Club. When we met Stoker Smith at the Finish at the 50 Race Expo he thought that Vince might have passed on. When we skyped with him last week, he said that he would reach out and see if he was still around. I told him where he lived. By the way Vince lives in Warwick near Mike Douglas' house on the Island but I digress.

So I cried and had goosebumps seeing us at the finish line of the Bermuda Half Marathon. It was as though we were there and I could experience the sense of jubilation and exhilaration as well as the sights and smell of Bermuda.

After our training run, I got into my ice bath and had post run fueling with Blue Diamond Gluten free crackers with sesame seeds, an orange and water. I posted our run to Facebook via Nike+ and let myself enjoy the benefits of a post run ice bath feeling my body recover from the run in which we took of 24"/mile of our pace.

We relaxed the rest of the day and I worked on my book, "Going the Distance."

I remember what training for a marathon feels like and it's kind of like going through a pregnancy. Your body is changing and you get all sorts of cravings. Mine came in the form of mashed potatoes so we fixed mashed potatoes and barbecued chicken on the grill with a huge salad. I wanted a decadent dessert and we settled for a half of a Luna bar. We had been considering going out for dessert but something told me to just stay at home....

My phone rings just as we finished dinner. It's a Bermuda number - yup it was Vince! He didn't know what happened to us and said you just kind of disappeared from our lives. I briefly told him about my journey. He was so happy that we are coming back to the Island and said to give him a call as soon as we get in in January.

Not five minutes later, I receive a Skype call from Stoker! He told us that he used the phone book to find Vince once we told him where he lived. He said he was so happy to hear that McManus was fine and was coming to the Island. He was delighted that Vince called us and did not know it would happen so fast. He is going to make plans to meet up with Vince. He thinks they might have met before but now with the connection to us, he wants to reach out to him.

We talked with Stoker as though we have been friends for life. We talked about families, the race and Stoker's plans to return stateside to help out at the Falmouth Road Race Expo. He mentioned that the RD for Bermuda was heading to Maine for the Beach to Beacon 10K and would be meeting with Joan Benoit Samuelson to see if she'd come back to Bermuda to run the marathon in January.

The conversation was filled with magical moments and I just knew and felt in every fiber of my Being that the Divine has a hand in everything that is happening in my life now. Stoker told us that he is working on changing the marathon course from an out and back to one loop saying how you really can't ask volunteers to be out there for 6-8 hours while everyone finishes the race. He told us they have cups of water, bottles of water and gatorade available on the course. "It's a very relaxed atmosphere and few people come to actually race it." He told us one story of how he went to do a sweep of trash and people making sure everyone was fine out on the course if they still wanted to finish and was very distressed that he couldn't find a couple of runners who had registered for the race. He found them in a restaurant enjoying a meal and they had decided to ditch the race. I usually have so much anxiety going into a race that I have not run before but Stoker put me completely at ease. I know it is going to be an absolutely amazing experience to be running my first 13.1 since running Boston in 2009 on that beautiful island of Bermuda.



The Universe is orchestrating a beautiful symphony for my life. Ahh the sweet sounds of synchronicity!

I chronicle the first 7 years of my healing journey after being diagnosed with post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease as a survivor of childhood paralytic polio and 9 years of childhood domestic violence in Coming Home:A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility.


In Journey Well, the journey continues in the wake of my nephew's suicide on 3/4/11 and the events of 4/15/13. Through my journey of healing and transformation, we learn that no matter what life circumstances happen to us, we can always find a way to journey well.


"Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems," my latest collection of inspirational poetry is now available soon on Amazon


Wednesday, July 29, 2015

My Running Chronicles: There is magic in my running shoes!



The alarm went off on Tuesday morning. Tom and I set the meditation timer for 20 minutes. I could feel the heat and humidity in mind and body. I had a wonderful meditation setting my intentions for the day, feeling the love and peace in our home and reminding myself that everything is rewired; everything is healed. A part of me wanted to go back to sleep for another hour or two at least but it was time to get up and greet the day.

The heat made our plank challenging this morning and I'd also done a kick ass workout in the pool at WaveHealth yesterday. I wanted to cave literally and figuratively but instead I used my breath knowing that I am going the distance and nothing can stop me now. 2:20 plank done.

We decided to go downstairs where it was cooler to do our 50 crunches and 10 weighted clams.

Hydration, a piece of toast and a banana; don the running clothes and lace up the running shoes and out the door we go.

I suggested to Tom that we take a different route that would give us more shade. It would also give us more hills but that was the trade off.

It would have been easy to have taken an easy 3 miles and not done speed work given the heat and humidity but something was fired up inside of me and I wanted to do what we planned to do for our training run. During my meditation I practiced my mantra: I run unencumbered. I run swift. I run a 12:00 minute mile. I told Tom after we ended our meditation that I wanted to do a 14:00 minute mile today.

Tom looked at me and said, "You run unencumbered. You run swift. You run a 14:00 minute mile."

I felt the magic in my running shoes to sweep away any doubts in my ability to run and run swift.

First mile had a downhill and then a fairly long uphill. We took a water break at mile 1 with a split of 15:38.

We totally improvised our route as we went along going into the back roads near the Brookline Country Club; a beautiful scenic shaded route with rolling hills and beautiful flowers. I pushed my pace and ran a 15:11 second mile although I sprinted at the end and Tom caught a glimpse on my Nike+ of a 12:14 pace.

We stopped at mile 2 for another water stop. Sweat was pouring off of me and I noticed something quite remarkable.

When I run in the heat, my body used to overheat fairly quickly and I'd feel this heat behind my face through my forehead. The thermostat had been tampered with by the polio virus. But today, even though it was easily one of the hotter and more humid days we ran in, instead of feeling that overheating sensation, I poured sweat. My thermostat is fixed!!!



I felt strong, confident and unstoppable feeling the heal in every fiber of my being.

Our 3rd mile began with a downhill and I took every advantage of it knowing that we had a huge uphill to finish our run.

I couldn't talk while we ran; a sure sign that I was leaving nothing on the roads yesterday morning.

I dug deep. I knew that every step I took was bringing me one step closer to resounding success in the Bermuda Half Marathon in January. We took one quick water stop before surging up the hill to our finish.

My pace - 14:18 - a negative 53' split!

My plank was shaky. I was tired and it was hot and humid. Yet once I laced up my running shoes, I felt the magic. And I felt the power of the mantra and the intention that Jeffrey Spratt, MT, Principal of Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC set for me back on 4/19/15 when he said, "I want you to run unencumbered." I felt all the healing that comes from positive quality touch infused with love, light, joy, happiness, gratitude, passion and purpose.

And I felt the total love and intention from my partner in life and on the roads as he ran and sweated with me side by side and stride by stride to achieve an overall pace of 15:07 today with hills, heat and humidity.



The Thoroughbred

A dark horse
dark past
finishing last
ready to quit
battered and bruised
a foal fouled
yet Spirit unbroken
a thoroughbred deep inside
despite appearances
all she needed was a chance
someone to believe in her
a horse whisperer
in the mist
amidst fog and foliage
she runs
breaking free
transformed
into the champion she was always meant to be.




I chronicle the first 7 years of my healing journey after being diagnosed with post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease as a survivor of childhood paralytic polio and 9 years of childhood domestic violence in Coming Home:A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility.


In Journey Well, the journey continues in the wake of my nephew's suicide on 3/4/11 and the events of 4/15/13. Through my journey of healing and transformation, we learn that no matter what life circumstances happen to us, we can always find a way to journey well.


"Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems," my latest collection of inspirational poetry is now available soon on Amazon




Tuesday, July 28, 2015

My Running Chronicles: Nothing Can Stop Me Now!

During my meditation on Sunday I was starting to feel a little anxious about these next miles on my healing odyssey. What if's and doubts started to surface. I told myself, "You are a runner. Everything is healed. Everything is rewired. The more you do, the more your body will respond to the messages of confidence and strength and will do everything it needs to do to get stronger. Here is your schedule: Run long...strength train ... swim and strength train in the pool ... run short for speed and hills ... strength train. Recover and rejuvenate with weekly treatments with Jeff Spratt, Principal of Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC every Thursday and Friday a little core work and rest day. It's a perfect formula for success. Just get out of your own way and enjoy the journey."

And then this song came into my thoughts:


Nothing CAN stop me now as long as I keep my thoughts focused on health, well-being and fully embracing and embodying myself as an endurance runner; feeling the incredible power in partnering with the Divine Mind within me to clear the energy from the past, sticking to my plan knowing my body can rise to the occasion and partnering with Jeff to continue to nourish, heal, strengthen, revitalize, and reclaim my life.

I knew that Tom and I needed to tweak our strength training plan as we increased miles. I wanted to do it from a place of well strength and not fear.

On Sunday, we turned to our dear friend and Coach Reno Stirrat's website Distance Running Tips. I had instinctively ordered ankle weights to decrease repetitions and maximize strengthening those all important quad muscles and hip flexors. Tom and I reviewed the videos that Reno has posted on his website and got to work.

It was so funny to see how I had a moment's pause before doing straight leg lifts on the floor with an ankle weight. I smiled and reminded myself that my mind and body need to work together for me to go the distance this time and finally cross the river of change as Dr. Joe Dispenza calls it in "You Are the Placebo."

And you know what? This time I am going the distance. I have everything in place mind, body and Spirit and will be vigilant when thoughts and feelings express doubts and fears and replace them with knowing and believing in every fiber of my Being that this time, total healing is mine to claim. I've worked hard for it. I deserve it. It is my birthright and the Universe has blessed me with everything I need. I am surrounded by a village of believers who know as I know that nothing can stop me now!

Get you gone, you sky of grey!
Farewell, you furrowed brow!
Now my future's crystal clear!
No more woe for me to fear!
I'm gonna stand this world upon its ear -
And I'll succeed somehow!

I'll walk a million miles
For life's full of smiles.
Nothing can stop me now!




I chronicle the first 7 years of my healing journey after being diagnosed with post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease as a survivor of childhood paralytic polio and 9 years of childhood domestic violence in Coming Home:A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility.


In Journey Well, the journey continues in the wake of my nephew's suicide on 3/4/11 and the events of 4/15/13. Through my journey of healing and transformation, we learn that no matter what life circumstances happen to us, we can always find a way to journey well.


"Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems," my latest collection of inspirational poetry is now available soon on Amazon




Monday, July 27, 2015

My Running Chronicles: You have a strong and healthy leg there! - Believing is Seeing





By all appearances on an MRI last December, it was time to hang up my running shoes. But all the seeds I planted 8+ years ago when I left my award winning social work career at the VA to heal my life started to blossom. The Universe first sent me Dr. Ryan, a healer who practices chiropractic medicine and then Jeff Spratt, Principal, Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC.

I decided that I was going to grow a new gastroc muscle and completely heal the effects from paralytic polio and violence.

I had reconstructive leg surgery oh over 20 years ago now and they used a long metal plate and screws to put the leg back together again. A year later I told my wonderful orthopedic surgeon that I did not want the metal in me any longer and needed to have it removed. He had told me that after a year we could consider that option...So I have the hardware removed and am partial weight bearing on crutches for 6 weeks while the bone filled in where the holes were for the screws. I didn't have to think about it. I totally trusted my body's ability to heal and grow new bone. My surgeon knew it would happen. I believed it would happen and so it did. Our bodies know exactly what to do to heal when we step aside and trust and believe in the process.

This is one of my favorite quotes from Dr. Joe Dispenza, author of "You Are the Placebo" and one of the teachers in "What the bleep do we know..."



Dr. Ryan prescribed gastroc strengthening exercises for me. At first, my left leg could not lift up onto my toes to strengthen my gastroc muscle because it had atrophied from the polio virus. But while I did the exercises, I imagined myself going up and down with ease as I could on my right leg. During meditations, I visualized the growth of my gastroc muscle. Dr. Ryan had used kinesiotaping to stimulate the growth of the gastroc muscle and Jeff and I partnered during my treatment sessions to nourish the growth of this new muscle.

Little by little, I was able to feel the gastroc muscle fire up and do a calf raise.

And then something amazing happened last week after my cycle of marathon training was completed on Wednesday.

My left calf muscle was SORE! Yes!

I was ecstatic to tell Jeff before our treatment that he needed to work on my left calf because it was sore. We also had the "usual suspects" to work on and Jeff allows Spirit to guide him to what needs to be attended to during the treatment.

As Jeff worked on my left leg he said, "You have a strong and healthy leg there!"

I told him to just imagine what it was like - like Tiny Tim or Forrest Gump.

"Run Forrest Run" he said channeling Jenny from that scene in the movie:



I got emotional as I told him I'd watch that scene over and over and over again to visualize what it would be like to run as I still sat in a leg brace and was using a wheelchair at times for mobility back in 2007 but had already written the poem, "Running the Race."

Two weeks ago, as Jeff used craniosacral techniques to continue to help me heal the neurological effects of polio and violence and to create a new neural net, I said, "It's draining." Jeff said, "It's losing its strength." This last week I could feel a clearing in my energy.

As the past loses strength, I gain strength growing, transforming, evolving mind, body and Spirit.

Saturday's training run was my longest mileage since last October when I ran the Tufts 10K. It was perfect running conditions. We decided to do our two neighborhood reservoir run. We passed many friends and neighbors, one of whom is our age and our kids went to school together said, "You guys are making us look bad. Stop it." I did run a little faster with a little more swagger as we passed by.

Tom and I chatted about nothing and about everything. I love these times together when we unplug and take in the beauty of nature while training for our half marathon in Bermuda on January 17th, 2016. Tom and I make sure to pause and notice the ripples in the water, the ducks and the geese; the cloud formations and express our gratitude for being alive, for being together for almost 40 years, for how well our 28 year old twins are doing now and for the gift of running. We reflected on the blessing of us now being in sync with each other going the distance instead of Tom training to go long and me either not running or running shorter distances. We took 26 seconds/mile off of last week's run and added another .5 miles to our distance.



Tom was in awe today of my stride. As we ran over a little bridge that only allows for one person to go at a time he told me he could see my gastroc muscle on my left leg. He affirmed what Jeff told me on Thursday and what I knew to be true even before I had any physical evidence to support my claim, "You have a strong and healthy leg there!"

I had to believe it before I could see it.



My books are available through Amazon.

I chronicle the first 7 years of my healing journey after being diagnosed with post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease as a survivor of childhood paralytic polio and 9 years of childhood domestic violence in Coming Home:A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility.


In Journey Well, the journey continues in the wake of my nephew's suicide on 3/4/11 and the events of 4/15/13. Through my journey of healing and transformation, we learn that no matter what life circumstances happen to us, we can always find a way to journey well.


***NOW AVAILABLE*** "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems,"


Sunday, July 26, 2015

Feel the Heal: A Charmed Life

Eight years ago on 5/25th, I took a leap of faith and left my award winning career as a VA social worker 3 years shy of when I was eligible to retire to heal my life. Truthfully I had no idea in my conscious mind what that meant. I just knew that I was not going to allow myself to go down the path of a slow, painful living death. I was in uncharted waters trusting in God and trusting in myself to turn my ship around and set sail for a new world.

I remember sitting in my yard on a day much like today. I was in a leg brace and feeling physically unwell. Somewhere inside of me I had hope and as I mentioned, faith that there was a future waiting for me that I was creating through my pen, my divining rod of healing, my meditation and my own stubborn Being that knew I was going to find a way out of the mess...It reminds me of when I contracted paralytic polio and things were not looking good for me as I lay on the couch paralyzed with a drug addicted mother glaring at me having to wait to get my basic needs met until my father or grandfather came home from work. I was touched by grace and knew that I was going to make it through that mess and the messiness of my childhood.

Each choice I made, I made with the intention to heal my life. Sometimes I had to learn soul lessons over and over again; sometimes the external stressors in my life (like my nephew's suicide and in the wake of 4/15/13) consumed my energy and didn't allow for growth and repair and healing.

But all that matters is here and now.

Last year, during a meditation, I wrote this poem in which I talk about leading a charmed life. When I first wrote it, I thought that perhaps I was talking about a previous life because I was still struggling with my healing. But no ... once again, my Divine Mind was forecasting the preview of coming attractions.










I now live a charmed life from the inside out. I feel the magic of the Universe inside of me and I feel the power of Divine Love. I feel happy, healthy, whole and a sense of well being. And while I continue to heal and create a new body and a new way of Being without the effects of paralytic polio and violence, I can totally feel the heal that has happened in my body. We are just bringing it fully into physical manifestation now.

Twice a week I am in the five star Seaport Hotel at WaveHealth. Every Monday, everything I need - an easy commute, a parking space and the lap lane free is there for me. Their locker rooms are worthy of a 5 star rating and I shower there after my swim. There are so many restaurants to choose from for my post swim fueling if I decide to get something to go or I come home and have lunch.



Tuesday mornings I get to do speed work with my running and life partner of almost 40 years! We are training for - talk about a charmed life - the Bermuda Half Marathon in January.



Wednesdays are my home strength training days and time for writing, reading, meditating and taking excellent care of myself.

Thursdays are what leading a charmed life is all about. Weekly 90 minute treatments with Jeffrey Spratt, MT, Principal of Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC. "An industry leading massage therapy office that provides effective muscular and massage therapy treatment designed to your specific issues. Restore. Rejuvenate and Reclaim your life. Our world-class Massage Therapy practice in Wave Health & Fitness in Boston’s Seaport Hotel offers you the amenity of the most effective Massage Therapy you’ll experience, delivered by highly trained therapists – healers who focus on your body and mind.

All Massage Therapy sessions are skillfully developed by the therapists at Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC to address your unique needs. Your Massage Therapist can concentrate on some of the most common issues we all face – tension, muscle aches and even disturbed sleep patterns. Or more complex issues from injury rehabilitation to sports performance. Whether you’re looking to feel invigorated or relaxed, recover or prepare, your massage therapist will provide the type of massage that will work best for your expectations – with your input, of course."


Fridays I do a little core work but it's mostly a rest and integrate Thursday's treatment day.

Saturday are long runs with my bestie and on Sunday we do cross training together.

Enchanted Forest

Thatched canopy of tangled branches
virgin snow blankets forest’s floor
dreamily listening to crackling fire
warmth spreading fills every pore.

Owl alights on fragile ice-laden limb bending under its weight
invisible hand holds him fast to Divine Love he trusts his fate.
Releasing grip of his talons One with Earth and winter’s gray sky
faith and hope and freedom knowing he has wings to fly.

Hidden deep among all creatures
ear cocked signs of Spring she hears
sounds of stirring and thawing
she knows change of season now nears.

Heart beats with eager anticipation cabin door creaks open she peeks
heralding rebirth renewal she awakens to their calls and shrieks.

What wonder awaits her beyond her door
once bare branches burst with green
in awe to see life in all of its splendor
her breath catches beholding this scene.

Heralding end of her slumber soul freed from darkness of night
trees dancing in jubilation twirling her round she smiles with delight.
A gossamer gown adorns her she’s crowned with a tiara of grace
princess ballerina poised on point joyful movements playful chase.
Everything she ever hoped for everything she’ll ever need
dwelling in this magical land charmed life is hers now to lead.


Fire up your imagination. Create the present and future of your dreams and feel the heal!

I am delighted to be able to share my healing odyssey and my gift of poetry with you in this latest anthology of my poems.



You can purchase your copies along with "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility," and "Journey Well" on Amazon. I have already started writing poems for "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life Volume II", and "Going the Distance" which chronicles these latest miles on my marathon of healing from my knee injury last December to when I cross the finish lines of the Bermuda Half Marathon in January 2016 and the Newport Marathon in October.


Saturday, July 25, 2015

Feel the Heal: A is for Amazing

Since I am a wordsmith, during one of my recent morning meditations, I began playing with the alphabet expressing Love, gratitude and joy. It took a couple of weeks to craft this poem in which every line begins with a letter of the alphabet and it was a delightful process of feeling close to the Divine within me:

A is for Amazing

A is for amazing awake aware alive
B is for God’s bounty unbounded for us to thrive.
C is for contagious spreading love in all we do
D is for delicious decadent Divine uniquely you.
Everything is perfect in God’s mysterious wondrous way
Finding faith and trusting beckon friends to come and play.
Growing in God’s likeness in gloriousness we shine
Happiness and harmony life is blissful fancy fine.
I AM all that I’m meant to be your blessed beloved child
Jackpot won in lottery of life on Your family You’ve always smiled.
Knocking on your kingdom’s door of my life You’re always a part
Laughter, loving, lusciousness treasure in my heart.
Meditation in the stillness moving ever closer to You
Needing nothing when You’re near always sees me through.
Observing without judging allowing everything to Be
Patience practice persistence with You I’m running free.
Questioning and querying no need for asking why
Rest assured there is a purpose dry my tears no need to cry.
Synchronicity serendipity surrender is a must
Thankful for this life we live based in faith and trust.
Universal Love unconditional showers upon us all
Vowing to let you be my Guide to catch me if I fall.
Welcome grace’s blessings cup our hands let it rain
X-ray vision You see through us easing all our pain.
Yoda’s wisdom now resounding trust the Force wield saber’s light
Zealous in our purpose Spirit soaring now takes flight!


I am delighted to be able to share my healing odyssey and my gift of poetry with you in this latest anthology of my poems.



You can purchase your copies along with "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility," and "Journey Well" on Amazon. I have already started writing poems for "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life Volume II", and "Going the Distance" which chronicles these latest miles on my marathon of healing from my knee injury last December to when I cross the finish lines of the Bermuda Half Marathon in January 2016 and the Newport Marathon in October.

Cheers! To Life! Feel the heal and let us all love ourselves well!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Feel the Heal: Reclaim My Life

Reclaim Your Advantage. Reclaim Your Life.




"How would I ever reclaim my life?" I asked the Universe in my poem "Foot Strike".

I staked my claim on my birthright as I climbed the "The Mountain of Trauma."

In "Leaving the Past Behind" I tell the Universe that I "lay claim to my authentic self..rubbing wrist and ankles where shackles once chafed."
I awaken
the purpose of my Being
coming into view
drowning out din from the past
going forth
living fearlessly to claim my life.


A New Age Dawns and I discover and claim birthright to me....

In the stillness I settle muddy waters made clear
Love comes to surface dispelling all fear
distilling distortions in silt may they rest
sparkling clear radiance knowledge I'm blessed.

A child of God to be free healthy whole
suffering ends joy bubbles in soul
live life in love heart open and sure
for all of life's ills this refreshment's the cure.

Each wave of breath worry leaves cannot last
come into the present feast on life's repast
a banquet of bounty allow turn of tide
life's truly magnificent surf the waves thrilling ride.

Trusting in Truth arrive safely on shore
believing relieving in each cell, every pore
transforming transcending healed form now takes hold
no longer bemoaning I'm fierce, strong and bold.

Dive in to my life delicious I heal
awake and alive with gusto and zeal
all of the bruises, feeling battered and worn
no longer matter for I am reborn.

My soul leaps within me making everything new
a celebration a triumph of all I've lived through
moving forward with ease, with style and grace
determined to BE in this world take my place.

A new age now dawning ripples laughter and glee
to discover and claim birthright to me.


As I "Dare to Dream" I let the Universe know that of God's inheritance I claim my share ...

All of those poems were written before I ever met Jeffrey Spratt, MT, Principal of Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC

Truth to be told - I didn't have the answers of how I would reclaim my life or claim the birthright that was mine to feel well, happy, whole and to erase the effects of my past that were deeply embedded in the fiber of my body and Being.

During these past 3 months since working with Jeff, it all becomes so clear. Yes, I am doing the work through meditation, visualization, continuing to write poems, working out, training hard but partnering with Jeff erases the pain of the past and allows my body to rewire and reorganize itself. "It's a vessel," Jeff said to me after my treatment two weeks ago. "We move out the bad to make room for the good." How elegantly simple. Do you know how many body workers and energy healers I worked with before I found Jeff? I smile at the long and winding road I took through three massage therapists, an energy healer/physical therapist; two very crazy KMI Structural Integrators, a crazy woman who practiced visceral manipulation and really did not know what she was doing God bless her; a massage therapist who initially was a good enough therapist but only practiced Zero Balancing on the front of the body and then something radically shifted in our relationship which was a blessing because it led me to Jeff. In order to manifest the healing I imagined, I needed new input from the environment and I needed new feedback. I needed to experience positive quality touch with the intention to heal everything with someone who is strong, grounded, connected to Source, compassionate and has a strong life force and a passion for the work and for life.

My body, heart and soul were crying out for healing 8+ years ago. My desires were expressed through my pen, my divining rod of healing. I didn't stop and couldn't stop seeking, working and being able to answer the question, "How would I ever reclaim my life?" The Universe finally answered me ....



I am delighted to be able to share my healing odyssey and my gift of poetry with you in this latest anthology of my poems.



You can purchase your copies along with "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility," and "Journey Well" on Amazon. I have already started writing poems for "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life Volume II", and "Going the Distance" which chronicles these latest miles on my marathon of healing from my knee injury last December to when I cross the finish lines of the Bermuda Half Marathon in January 2016 and the Newport Marathon in October.

Cheers! To Life! Feel the heal and let us all love ourselves well!





Thursday, July 23, 2015

Feel the Heal: #tbt Running the Race

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




It was a cold, dark day in February 2007. I sat in a leg brace, using a wheelchair at times for mobility. I faced a grim and uncertain future as the doctors handed down the decree of the diagnosis of post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease. They told me that if I had any hope of stabilizing the disease where it was, I would have to quit my full time award-winning career as a VA social worker three years shy of when I was eligible for retirement. It was a no brainer. I knew I had to take a leap of faith and leave my career. But what’s a social worker to do after almost 25 years? She opens her heart to the cadence of Dr. Seuss that brought her so much comfort during the painful physical therapy sessions as she recovered from paralytic polio. This is the first poem I penned. Bear in mind, I had never run a day in my life.


Running the Race

Early summer 1959 my kindergarten year
everyone around me filled with nervous fear.
Despite the Salk vaccine hope polio would disappear
the polio virus crept right up and knocked me in the rear.

Dancing all around the gym feeling free just like a bird
I dropped to the ground just like a stone and no one said a word.
The pain it was so searing-the diagnosis even worse
"It's polio" the doctor said...he was abrupt and terse.

Called one of the 'lucky ones' I had a 'mild case'
but with the other athletes I could never keep their pace.
Miss Holly physical therapist, curly hair and a warm, broad smile
it tempered the pain of being apart - to walk I'd take awhile.

I always wore those 'special' shoes the kids they poked and teased
with no support and much abuse with childhood I wasn’t pleased.
But put nose to the grindstone and learned all that I could
I couldn't kick a ball but my grades were always good.

Years went by and no more thought to polio did I give
I accepted the limp, everything else and decided my life I would live.
But symptoms of weakness and muscle pain did grow
I kept a stoic face hoping no one else would know.

Life no longer was my own I struggled through each day
suffered in silence, alone and afraid tried to keep depression at bay.
And with the grace of glorious God my world it opened wide
I discovered there was a Post Polio team and they were on my side.

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.

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.

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.


Writing this poem foreshadowed my running of the 2009 Boston Marathon!

Christmas 2007:


Running the race - the 2009 Boston Marathon-coming down Commonwealth Avenue toward the finish:


Feel the heal!

I am delighted to be able to share my healing odyssey and my gift of poetry with you in this latest anthology of my poems. You can purchase your copies along with "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility," and "Journey Well" on Amazon. I have already started writing poems for "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life Volume II", and "Going the Distance" which chronicles these latest miles on my marathon of healing from my knee injury last December to when I cross the finish lines of the Bermuda Half Marathon in January 2016 and the Newport Marathon in October.

Cheers! To Life! Feel the heal and let us all love ourselves well!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Feel the Heal: Gratitude



Bernie Siegel, MD
or Bernie as he likes to be called has been my chosen dad and rebirthing coach through many phases of my healing journey dating back to the 1980's when I was hospitalized with a staph infection in my shoulder joint. After finding myself in a mess with my mind, body and soul crying out for healing in December of 2006, I remembered how Bernie talked about the importance of gratitude and seeing every challenge as a blessing if one is going to heal their life.

One of my early poems was:

The Gift of Polio

Thank you God for the gift of polio that brought me so close to you
while paralyzed I saw your face no matter what I’d do
Many wonderful healers you sent them to me at age 5
perseverance and triumph life’s lessons learned
but my Spirit could not yet thrive.

At age 53 the gift was sent to me a second time
having time to sit and feel to heal I started to rhyme.
The second time felt worse than the first
yet your love and wisdom I found
out of pain and weakness and fatigue a remarkable spirit rebound.

Reliving all the trauma of special shoes and such
I discovered remarkable healers who brought a loving touch.
I had no clue I had such strength and the ability to grow
no matter what the outcome deep gratitude I show.

This gift so precious I live a new life gratitude flows from me
my heart and soul are filled with grace each day’s a gift from thee.


More recently, I wrote this poem that came to me during a meditation when I felt goosebumps of gratitude:

Gratitude Tingles

Heart opens in quiet eyes are closed gratitudes trickle then flow
the basics a home, good food and love awareness begins to grow.
Each beat of my heart reminds me I’m a miracle of life
grace showers constantly upon me relieving alleviating strife.

Goosebumps with each reflection every breath a moment to pause
gratitude tingles feel the warmth relaxing unclenching jaws.
Grateful to now be fully alive so blessed to be kissed awake
appreciation flows in every vein for granted nothing I take.

What joy there is in this journey let Spirit within ever reign
trusting in goodness and kindness erases all fear and pain.
Memory traces from the past pale and fade when facing Source
gratitude overpowers correcting direction on my life’s course.

In moments of meditation happiness joy and peace
from the depths of my soul a fountain grateful blessings increase.
Lips upturn into beautiful smile from head’s crown to tip of toes
gratitude tingles tickling trail of delight everywhere gratitude goes.


Living with an attitude of gratitude and forgiveness to those who hurt me have been the lynchpins in my marathon of healing.

Some days I feel ridiculously happy - so grateful to be alive:

Happy To Be Alive

Face to face with death at knife point
cold darkened eyes stare into mine
unflinching I stare back
afraid to move a muscle
already dead.

Life force safely tucked away
unknowing the outcome of this untimely encounter with death
at the hands of a madman
reasoning destroyed by gin and vermouth.

Angels intervene
he finds peace in death
I am left to put the pieces of my life back together again.
As numbness gives way to pain
pain gives way to gratitude
appreciation for this wondrous wonder filled life

where nothing makes sense and everything makes sense

purpose out of pain
grace in ungodly moments
surrounded by love
happy so happy to be alive

to tell the tale of one who almost died.


What are you grateful for? Do you live with an attitude of gratitude? When you do, you will feel the heal!

I am delighted to be able to share my healing odyssey and my gift of poetry with you in this latest anthology of my poems.



You can purchase your copies along with "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility," and "Journey Well" on Amazon. I have already started writing poems for "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life Volume II", and "Going the Distance" which chronicles these latest miles on my marathon of healing from my knee injury last December to when I cross the finish lines of the Bermuda Half Marathon in January 2016 and the Newport Marathon in October.

Cheers! To Life! Feel the heal and let us all love ourselves well!




Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Feel the Heal: Unencumbered

"I want you to run unencumbered," Jeffrey Spratt, MT, Principal of Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC said to me after our first treatment together on 4/19/15. He had just met me and knew very little about me other than I experienced paralytic polio and domestic violence as a child. He could feel the congestion that was still in my body. He felt in his heart what I have been working on in my life for the past 8+ years - to experience complete healing, happiness, well-being and freedom.

I had written three poems about feeling unencumbered before I ever met Jeff. They are part of Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life:



The Dancer

Crumpled cringing alone in darkness portrait of paralyzed child
heap of limbs loss of control panic fear run rampant and wild.
Enter stage right he gathers her gentle tears honor old embrace new
beautiful ballerina transformed music swells the pas de deux.
Dancing with Spirit she celebrates lost in moment of time and space
winged feet now poetry in motion joyful light ease and grace.

Daring she enters spotlight center stage a vision to behold
vulnerable yet confident - courageous strikingly bold.
On point to an audience she no longer plays
soul’s rhythm tempo she keeps
magic memories made in each moment
delighting grateful heart leaps.
Her life she now knows has no bounds
choreography her dancing decree
revelations unveiled with each movement
unencumbered expansive now free.

Sweet Victory

On the battlefield of life
when we fight the good fight
with compassion
a heart for a heart
to the victor goes the spoils.

A treasure trove of Truth
scars merely badges of honor
wounds healed
secret weapon of loving kindness
vapors of fear
tears spilled
water bathing the garden of my soul
yielding to joy
as treaty signed with forgiveness
sweet reward of peace.

Lush landscape
fragrant green grass
a winding road leading to everywhere
I run
unencumbered
untethered
strapping and healthy
free to be me
my victory lap.

The Chrysalis

Trembling with excitement
shaking it off
allow yourself to be with a capital B

Being who you were always meant to be
unencumbered

yet time well spent
on tiny legs
grounded to earth’s energy
garnering wisdom along the way

gathering together
possibility

a time of uncertainty
certain
this is the path
abide in darkness
surrender
lose grip on grasping
turning inward
discovering beauty
strength
free now
to
fly


I wrote this poem shortly after I started partnering with Jeff and told him that no, I don't want to be the runner I was before my knee injury ... I want to be a runner. period. Not a mobility impaired runner but a runner who can someday run a 12:00 minute mile. He used the imagery of the god Mercury on winged feet:

Born to Run

Born free
born to run
run free
unencumbered untethered unshackled
pouring energy into my running form
liquid gold once fired in the crucible
now my treasure born of my Spirit molded with alchemy
refining
my precious treasure once buried
the map safely tucked away
X marks the spot
a new starting line.

Poised and ready
to go the distance
all out without hesitation
all is healed at last
my pace swift
Mercury and Hermes pace me on winged feet
I AM
born to run
running free
joyfully crossing the finish line with ease.


This morning, Tom and I went on a training run. Our 5K's on Tuesdays are when we work on speed. It was humid but it was overcast and there was an occasional breeze. We opted for a hillier course than last week. It's so important to change up the route to avoid boredom of mind, body and Spirit. We ran to the Chestnut Hill Reservoir and I left nothing on the roads this morning. It took a lot of effort to run an average 15:04 pace with negative splits all the way and miles 2 and 3 at a 14 and change minute/mile pace but oh what a thrill to be able to run unencumbered and to challenge myself. I took 18 seconds off of last week's run and 6 seconds off of my 5K PR from last year. It's all so wonderful and miraculous to feel the heal and watch everything that I wrote about through my poetry, that was and is my heart's desire come into physical manifestation!

Feel the heal!

I am delighted to be able to share my healing odyssey and my gift of poetry with you in this latest anthology of my poems. You can purchase your copies along with "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility," and "Journey Well" on Amazon. I have already started writing poems for "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life Volume II", and "Going the Distance" which chronicles these latest miles on my marathon of healing from my knee injury last December to when I cross the finish lines of the Bermuda Half Marathon in January 2016 and the Newport Marathon in October.

Cheers! To Life! Feel the heal and let us all love ourselves well!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Feel the Heal: Come Out and Play



Because of paralytic polio followed by unrelenting violence against my little person, my body did not have a chance to heal from paralytic polio. I was blessed to be able to walk again but wasn't free to run and enjoy my childhood. Lugging a metal leg brace for three years (picture Forrest Gump although mine was only on my left leg) did not bode well for being included in typical childhood games at the park. My cousin once said to me that I was way too serious for an 11 year old. Well I had a lot to be serious about.

Fast forward to the 53 year old me ... my body, mind and soul were withering away, crying out for healing. My life was spiraling downward and I was not going to let that happen to me.

After the diagnosis of post polio syndrome in December of 2006, which I call a life giving diagnosis and in truth any diagnosis can be life giving if that is how we choose to experience it, I got still and asked for Divine Guidance as I wrote about in yesterday's blog, Feel the Heal: Where It All Began.

Poetry began flowing out of me at warped speed. I had to keep pen and paper with me at all times. Now I keep my iPhone and notes with me at all times because you never know when inspiration is going to strike!

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



One night I had a dream that I came out of my leg brace and was splashing around in the rain much like Gene Kelly did in Singing in the Rain. When I woke up, I penned this poem:

Come Out and Play

Arms flung open wide dancing in the rain
pure abiding joy to feel alive again
healing tears fall and blend in God’s puddle
no time to sit in a corner and huddle
all the old rules driven by fears
washed away now by God’s loving tears
the imprint dad left no longer remains
rain washes away all of the stains
baptized with love, Truth lights my way
the sun shines through on this rainy day
splashing and laughing my heart opens wide
embracing and flowing I’m one with the tide
God takes my hand release the old way
bathe in my glory come out and play!


When I wrote this I had absolutely no idea of the when, how or what would happen to bring this into physical manifestation. I know I felt amazing while writing the poem and imagining how I would feel to be out of my leg brace, dancing and singing feeling happy and free.

Almost 40 years ago now, God sent me a wonderful playmate in my husband Tom. We have weathered many storms together but now we are having the time of our lives singing and dancing in the rain going on destination runcations and experiencing happiness, peace and joy together as we train for the Bermuda Half Marathon in January and then will move onto 26.2 next October. He told me it was a no-brainer when the team at Spaulding Rehab told me I needed to quit my job if we were going to stabilize the symptoms where they were but told me to be prepared for a progression of the symptoms ultimately requiring a wheelchair. We now run side by side, stride by stride enjoying every mile of the journey. We cross train together and enjoy our healthy lifestyle.

God sent me Jeffrey Spratt, MT principal of Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC whose hands are erasers that move out all of the bad stuff that happened to me to create space for that luscious, decadent Divine energy to flow - unencumbered. Chronic fatigue and pain are gone! I feel invincible and I feel that the world is my oyster - at 61 years old! He is a great sports massage therapist and a healer in every sense of the word!

This morning I did my cross training in the pool at WaveHealth. While it is hard work to train for endurance events, I felt a sense of play and enjoyment as I went through my 2 hour workout. A bonus today was seeing someone I had seen in May before Boston's Run to Remember in the pool. Her first half marathon was in Bermuda in January. She gave the low down on the course and next week is going to share the photos she took while running the race that are in her phone. She is training for a Sprint Tri and is trying to wrap her head around the swim portion of the competition. We inspired each other.

I am so blessed and grateful that I now feel the heal and no longer need to hide or feel shame or embarrassment about my past or about my body. It's time for me to come out and play.

Won't you join me?

I am delighted to be able to share my healing odyssey and my gift of poetry with you in this latest anthology of my poems. You can purchase your copies along with "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility," and "Journey Well" on Amazon. I have already started writing poems for "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life Volume II", and "Going the Distance" which chronicles these latest miles on my marathon of healing from my knee injury last December to when I cross the finish lines of the Bermuda Half Marathon in January 2016 and the Newport Marathon in October.

Cheers! To Life! Feel the heal and let us all love ourselves well!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Feel the Heal: Where It All Began



My small body sat in what seemed to me to be an over-sized dark mahogany chair with red leather padding on the seat that matched the color of my red polio shoes. I wore a long metal leg brace on my left leg that Miss Holly, my physical therapist tenderly removed to get me ready for yet another grueling physical therapy session to help my body heal from the ravages of paralytic polio.

"Called one of the lucky ones I had a 'mild' case
but with the other athletes I could never keep their pace..."
... excerpt from "Running the Race"

To my left was a round table with a lamp on it and a selection of Dr. Seuss books scattered among the magazines.

"What would you like to read today?" Miss Holly asked.

"The Cat in the Hat."

No matter how many times I chose "The Cat in the Hat," Miss Holly honored my choice.

"The sun did not shine it was too wet to play..."

And after reading the final words "What would you do if your mother asked you?" she scooped me up and brought me into the physical therapy treatment room. As she put on hot woolen blankets and coaxed my muscles and nerves back to health, we would take turns reciting "The Cat in the Hat" line for line to distract me from the searing pain of the treatment.

From "Running the Race""
Miss Holly physical therapist, curly hair and a warm, broad smile
it tempered the pain of being apart - to walk I'd take awhile.

I always wore those 'special' shoes the kids they poked and teased
with no support and much abuse with childhood I wasn’t pleased.
But put nose to the grindstone and learned all that I could
I couldn't kick a ball but my grades were always good.

Years went by and no more thought to polio did I give
I accepted the limp, everything else and decided my life I would live.
But symptoms of weakness and muscle pain did grow
I kept a stoic face hoping no one else would know.


In December of 2006, I was diagnosed with post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease as Western Medicine defines it. As I was facing a rather grim future according to the doctors, I got still and asked God for guidance about helping me find my way out of the mess I was in where my mind, body and Spirit were slowly dying.

In February of 2007, my prayers were answered as I returned to the cadence of Dr. Seuss that had helped me to heal after the initial polio virus. That first poem I wrote, "Running the Race" foreshadowed my 2009 Boston Marathon run although I sat in a leg brace, used a wheelchair at times for mobility and faced a rather grim and uncertain future according to the doctors. But through poetry, I was creating a very different future than the one the doctors predicted for me.

I've been writing poetry ever since to inspire mind, body and Spirit to heal from having experienced horrific acts of 9 years of violence at the hands of family members shortly after coming out of my leg brace at the age of 8.

For the first time in these last 8+ years, I know in every fiber of my Being that total healing is mine to claim.

It's been a long and winding road that led me to Dr. Joe Dispenza's work through Dr. Ryan Means, a chiropractor who reminded me of everything I was writing about in my poetry and helped me begin to bring it into physical manifestation. When I told him I wanted to grow a new gastroc muscle, he used kinesiotaping to stimulate the new muscle growth.


He gave me exercises to build strength and cross train and education about self-care for runners. As important as everything he gave me in the physical world including spine adjustments that helped to release the trauma I held in my bones and posture, he gave me a renewed sense of hope and possibility. "Why set limits?" he asked me when I said that I would cap off my distance at 5 miles...why indeed?

On April 19th, three months ago today, I had my first treatment with Jeffrey Spratt, MT, Principal of Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC. "What leg are we rehabbing?" he asked me and after feeling the heal through what he calls, "quality positive touch," I knew that everything I expressed through my pen, my divining rod of healing, was now going to come into physical manifestation.

My love for poetry and how it can heal all began in the physical therapy office of Dr. Eugene Moskowitz, MD in Mount Vernon, New York with a wise physical therapist reading Dr. Seuss to me when I was 5 1/2 years old.

Meeting two heaven sent healers, Dr. Ryan and Jeff inspired the phrase feel the heal, and my latest book of inspirational poetry, "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life."

I am delighted to be able to share my healing odyssey and my gift of poetry with you in this latest anthology of my poems. You can purchase your copies along with "Coming Home: A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility," and "Journey Well" on Amazon. I have already started writing poems for "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life Volume II", and "Going the Distance" which chronicles these latest miles on my marathon of healing from my knee injury last December to when I cross the finish lines of the Bermuda Half Marathon in January 2016 and the Newport Marathon in October.

Cheers! To Life! Feel the heal and let us all love ourselves well!