your own success story

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“Together” (mixed media sculpture) for sale on my artwork page

Jack and I hit a huge crisis in our lives several months ago. At times, all we wanted to do was pull the covers over our heads and hope it would go away…hope that it was all a bad dream. But those thoughts and feelings were only sporadic. We both knew that anything that was in our faces, was not only called into being by us, but was actually there to help us grow, awaken, and become more than we dreamed we could be.

One day, when I thought that I’d never get rid of the ugly scenes that flowed through my mind, I began to say, “Of course this will become a non-issue. You are continually changing. Don’t hold yourself to such a low standard of thought. Never say that you, or anyone else, can’t change.”

I felt instant relief as memories of how I had changed, in very significant ways, began to flood my mind. I recalled how in high school I felt dumb. I did so poorly in classes that I almost didn’t graduate. But when I decided to challenge that, it changed… I changed…and now, there is no part of me that feels inadequate in this area of my life. I needed to “do the work”, but that was OK. At 29 years old, with 2 children, I graduated summa cum laude, phi beta kappa, from the University of New Hampshire, and went on to study at Harvard Divinity School.

Then I remembered getting sober in 1986. Because I had started drinking when I was 13 (one of the reasons for the pitiful grades and behavior in high school) I couldn’t imagine a life without alcohol. But one day, Grace hit me over the head with the words, “You are an alcoholic and you need AA”, and from that moment on, I never drank again…and more importantly, never wanted to.

For years, I had tortuous relationships with my parents. I truly believed that I’d never feel inner peace when I thought of either of them…but it changed. I wasn’t hit over the head with Grace on this one…I had to work at it, but eventually my thoughts evolved and now, I can easily say that those relationships are perfect…just the way they are. My parents don’t need to change for me to love them. Amazing.

As I pondered more ways that I had once been “possessed” by negative thoughts (about anyone and anything including myself) and realized that I was no longer there, I knew in my heart that the current situation was going to be the same, and very quickly, examples began showing themselves to me of how this situation was really a profound gift.

I thought of all of our friends and family who’d supported us, loved us, and told us that they were holding us in their prayers and thoughts. So many came forth with just simple words like, “You guys have always been great together. You’ll get through this.” Jack and I would always talk about these incidents at night and soak in the blessings….and gifts….and this brings me to “the nights”.

For years, we’d had separate bedrooms…thinking that Jack’s snoring and my need for a lot of space were the reasons, but as soon as this happened, we clung to each other as if we were saving our lives…and being back in the same bed just happened. What a gift. Something that we thought we didn’t want at all (someone talking to us or waking us up in the middle of the night) has become one of the favorite parts of our day….gentle, soft, words like, “I love you”, “You are wonderful”, “I am so happy to be married to you”, float between us like clouds of blessings….what a gift….what a success story.

One thing that I am sure of is this: every situation in my life, in your life, in anyone’s life, has within it a very different story, outcome, or result…if we choose to look for it. We cannot curse the events of our lives and expect them to yield blessings/good. We cannot call someone horrible, deranged, stuck, unable to change, or any other “curse” and expect a different person to suddenly show himself or herself to us. All of life is happening for me. All of life is happening for you. Bless it…release the past…and claim your success story now.

“A metaphysician once gave me a wonderful recipe for taking every trick in the game of life, it is the acme of nonresistance. He gave it in this way; ‘At one time in my life, I baptized children, and of course, they had many names. Now I no longer baptize children but I baptize events, but I give every event the same name. If I have a failure I baptize it success.” In this we see the great law of transmutation, founded on nonresistance. Through his spoken word, every failure was transmuted into success.”

From, The Game of Life and How to Play It, Florence Scovel Shinn (published in 1925)

18 thoughts on “your own success story

  1. Wonderful essay, Mary – I have experienced some of the same negative thoughts and feelings and fears, and some of the same Grace to change myself, my relationships, and my expectations of myself and others . Thank you for your honesty and hard won wisdom. Mary Rita

  2. Dear Mary,

    I am so glad I read this post. I am feeling like I am in a particularly dark place for the last few days. I am visiting my Mom who is sadly loosing ground to memory and function. I have been unable to get past comparing myself to her and feeling doomed to deterioration and loneliness. Your words are inspiring – a life line. I have one day left and I am going to dig deep with your support whispering and surrounding me.

    Best wishes,

    Louise

    On Sat, Oct 29, 2016 at 11:30 AM, Mary Muncil ♡ White Feather Farm wrote:

    > Mary Muncil posted: ” Jack and I hit a huge crisis in our lives several > months ago. At times, all we wanted to do was pull the covers over our > heads and hope it would go away…hope that it was all a bad dream. But those > thoughts and feelings were only sporadic. We both knew t” >

  3. Mary, as I’ve said before, there are times when I am wrestling with an issue, as I have been this past week, that you send out a message that resonates with me. A friend died a week ago, he was not a follower of ‘man/made/organized’ religion. He also had a problem which you faced earlier on in your life but he chose not to deal with his addiction. His wife became a minister later in life. Now, I was raised in the church and this is the foundation of my life growing up, our lives centred around one church or another. It gave structure to my life. Yet, graduating as I did, as well later in life, from Art College, having studied many different and early cultures, I came to believe that there was no one religion but many beliefs in which people lived in their lives. Thus, the formal rituals, while comfortingly familiar, began to ring falsely to me in their words. Throughout the week I have been struggling, seeking to understand the underlying reasons for my reaction to a situation in which I supported the wife, physically but not spiritually, trying to come to terms with an understanding that has yet to happen because I am not without the thought that while being a minister in a congregation gives the privilege of coming into peoples lives and minds through support, that it may also allow for entitlement. And where is compassion in all of this, loving the person with the addiction yet conflicted in feeling that what he did affected his family badly and in the end, feeling great sadness in the loss of a life so gifted yet damaged by his affliction. Despite his decreasing mobility and wounds that would not heal, asking how he was, the answer was always, “great”. As you can see by the length of my response, my mind’s still processing but again, I thank you for your message, Mary.
    SandyP, in Canada

    • As I read your words, Sandy (and thank you for them!) I was thinking about my parents and how I’ve come to view them as “perfect”….but no one on the outside would feel this way! As Jack and I moved through “the crisis” there was always a sense that, even though difficult, it was still right in the larger scheme of things…from the birds-eye view. Much love to you today, Mary

  4. Mary, What an honest and heartfelt post. I had tingles while I read it and reread it. There is so much truth in what you said. Thank you. Peggy

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    • I am very grateful that this post spoke to you, Peggy…this is the reason for my writing; to connect with others, and share my life in a meaningful way. Your words were a lovely affirmation of this. Much love, Mary

  5. Thank you Mary for sharing your wisdom with us today. Transmutation, founded on non-resistance – wow, whether be it a person or event, – I am going to try this today with a family member who is coming for dinner and can be so difficult. And baptizing the event – making the old “new” – yes! Blessings to all!

    • Thank you so much, Susan. I had the same reaction to that quote…so simple and beautiful. Please share about your dinner experience if you want to! Loving thoughts to you, Mary

  6. As always, a wonderful post. You used a phrase that I keep thinking of during this election period. It is happening for me/us. It is for me/us. There are things that are happening that are for me/us. I hear you saying that to me repeatedly during our sessions. It takes time and patience and faith and a willingness to be open to what that might be.

    I also want to share a link for the audio recording of the book you referenced. This website is a treasure trove of great free talks and books and what have you. https://archive.org/details/game_of_life_0911_librivox

  7. (Previous post was written last night before going to bed. This one is first thing in the morning.)

    I was reading something from The Course in Miracles this morning (workbook #304) and it also reminded me of things that Mary Muncil has been sharing with us.

    Here it is:
    “Perception is a mirror, not a fact. And what I look on is my state of mind, reflected outward.”

    I’ll definitely be re-reading Mary’s post from above. There are always so many layers and things to look at within her posts.

    (And speaking of layers……..I also would like to order your artwork – “He Holds The Universe in His Hands.” You also mention “layers” in your description of the piece. I appreciated the description in addition to feeling the warmth and security that the painting evoked for me. As you can tell, many of my thoughts have been dovetailing with each other and things “feel” like they are opening up to me.)

  8. Dearest Mary,

    Love, light & blessings to you and Jack.

    Hugs,
    Monika

    (Thank you for the wonderful link Mary S)

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