Unbound: Transforming Lives Through Touch
By Cynthia Waring
Reviewed by Lorrie Kazan for
Whole Life Times
This is a poetic and richly textured observation about connection, whether it
be connection to ourselves, our families, our own voice or personal embodiment.
Each of us has a story to tell, and in revealing the depths of her own passions
and misfortunes, Ms. Waring inevitably holds a mirror up for the reader to see
him or herself.
“I love bodies,” she says. “I love every shape they come in.
I love their smells, their texture and their heat. I love touching them. I have
been a massage therapist for 26 years.” So begins this memoir of personal
triumph and transformation, which includes not only the author’s journey
to consciousness but also allows us to witness her clients’ paths to finding,
or failing to find, their core truths.
Intimacy is what Waring craves, fears and consistently explores. Following her
we learn about the brilliance of bodies, the feelings they endure, secrets they
hide, and we experience what it means to be alive to one’s own flesh. In
the world of healing lies, “a place of indescribable stillness, and we
are able to feel the magic of connection and become one, floating in the vastness
We’re touched by the tenderness of Swedish massage, which we learn is “massage
of the heart,” that allows the author to care for her clients as if they
were her own “beloved,” as if their little fingers were as precious
to her as her son’s.
Conversely, we also plunge through her descent into alcoholism, and are ultimately
lead back through her redemption.
Her process of de-fragmenting the pieces of her life, allows us a greater vision
of our own. This page-turner is a quick read but well worth your efforts.
Archer Books 2002