Who Is Ask Mary Ellen?

Ask Mary Ellen's Biography

I am a wife, mother, sister, daughter and friend. My life is full of passion as I love inspiring others to seek their “Truth” and love themselves unconditionally. My mission is to assist everyone to create a life full of wellness, peace, joy, and unconditional healing love.

My childhood, although full of trauma, taught me to be the strong woman I am today. At the age of six, I was diagnosed with Petit Mal Temporal Lobe epilepsy. With proper medication, a very controllable form of epilepsy, yet my family was devastated. Mother told me not to tell anyone, I could not ever get married or have children. Being only six years old, I could not understand. I continued to live my life as normally as possible although my self-esteem was zero!

One day, while trying to intercede between mom and dad, during one of their many fights, my mother yelled at me, “Stop standing up for your dad. He never wanted you!” Stunned, I ran to my bedroom. Daddy came in to find me crying on the floor. I asked him, “is it true? Is what she said true?” My daddy replied, “yes, we were very poor and now that I have you, I wouldn’t give you up for anything! I love you!”  After this pivotal event in my life, I always had more respect for my daddy for telling the truth than I did for my mother for lashing out.  This dynamic continued in my house until I left for college

I attended the University of Georgia where I joined the Alpha Chi Omega sorority graduating Magna cum Laude in Education. 

My wellness journey began through a tragic moment of unawareness. While at the University of Georgia, I went to a psychiatrist to seek help. His answer was to make me part of the “Me Too” movement. I refused to go back to him, and no one would listen. Sadly, I attempted suicide. I was found unconscious and rushed to the hospital. While in a coma heard my father asking me to open my eyes.  I tried so very hard yet could not. The next memory I have was floating out of my body to a place very dark and very cold. On my left I saw a door opening. Shining through the door was the brightest white light I had ever seen. I floated up to the doorway where I was stopped by a man with outstretched arms, long hair and long flowing robes. Yes, it was Jesus Christ! I pleaded and begged to be let inside as behind his robes I could see the beauty of unconditional love and peace. He told me that what I did was very wrong, and I had a lot of good to do on Earth. I must go back. In an instant I heard the sound of a door slamming shut. I woke up in intensive care with tubes coming out of everywhere. I had been in a coma for three days!

The man who rushed me to the hospital became my first husband. We have a daughter who, at the age of three, was misdiagnosed with epilepsy. At this point I lost it! I was very mad at God because the one thing I asked him was to have a healthy child. He didn’t do that one small favor!! I was mad for about a year until one day I burst out laughing. Who am I, a little peon person to be mad at God – The Almighty! 

I connected with the Yale-New Haven seizure clinic and found a fantastic neurologist, Dr. Richard Mattson. He looked at my case of epilepsy by putting me in the seizure clinic. Then he put my daughter in for some tests. After three long days, Dr. Mattson told me I have a perfectly healthy daughter! Miracles do happen!

From this experience I learned to take charge of my own health and drop my fears. This was my fear coming true. You must drop your fears, or you create them. Always come from a healing place of love within yourself by learning to love yourself! 

One day, my husband left and I moved back to Atlanta with my daughter. I took up playing racquetball tournaments. It was a very positive way to of getting negative emotions out of my system. I went back to teaching middle school and I continued studying “A Course in Miracles.” I took classes at The Atlanta Awareness Center for many years.  Having always been a student of the Bible, I found A Course in Miracles waking me up to my “Awareness of Self.”

My daughter and I were at church when I felt the sharpest stabbing pain in my right eye. After many tests I was diagnosed in 1989 with Multiple Sclerosis. In 1989 there were no medications for MS and the literature was very negative. 

I became determined to control my MS monster instead of allowing it to control me! I studied Chinese herbal medicines, Natural herbs, Holistic medicines, and Ayurvedic healing to aid in my wellness journey. I knew if I feared my MS diagnosis, I would make it worse. I visualized my MS monster being hugged so hard, by love, he breaks into a million pieces. I visualized the plaque spots being remyelinated. I continue to eat a very strict diet.  I am aware of my what “triggers” my MS attacks. Also, I exercise religiously. 

I married Pete Ciganovich in 1998. He is the man God wants for me as he is supportive of my many projects as I am of his. We are perfect mirrors of our individual unconditional loving selves.

Hopefully, you will allow me to assist you on your wellness journey as you join me as I continue to learn. 



Sincerely with love, 

Mary Ellen Ciganovich

Director R.E.A.L. Health Mindfulness Education Center

R.E.A.L. = Really Enthusiastic About Life

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