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Waking: A Memoir of Trauma and Transcendence…
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Waking: A Memoir of Trauma and Transcendence

by Matthew Sanford

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    My Year Off: Recovering Life After a Stroke by Robert McCrum (KimB)
    KimB: A man in his Forties, dealing with a life changing stroke.
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I love Matthew Sanford's genuine voice. It's plain--this is a book without frills. It is welcoming--Sanford tells a good story. But most of all, this book is driven by passion. Sanford cares so much about the interconnections between body and spirit, his prose can't help but move the reader. When I closed this book, I was struck by how love for a subject can transcend craft.

As a spiritual memoir, I found WAKING refreshing--the primary spiritual practice is yoga, and Sanford does a beautiful job illustrating the power of yoga to bring about wholeness in a broken body. This book is an excellent model for how our bodies are active players in our spiritual lives. ( )
  ElizabethAndrew | May 13, 2013 |
Incredible story of a parapalegic man who discovers yoga and eventually becomes a teacher. Through the precise alignment of Iyengar yoga, he regains a subtle, vital connection to his whole body. Inspiring and thought-provoking. ( )
  gratefulyoga | Feb 9, 2012 |
So love this book! Originally heard of it during the original "Speaking of Faith" interview on MPR. I sought out the book, read it, and about a year later passed it on to someone else to read. Within a month, a friend heard a re-broadcast of the interview. She bought a copy for herself - and one for me - not knowing I had read it and passed it on. Now I have a copy again - but I would pass it on to almost anyone who might benefit from reading this story - almost anyone being almost everyone. Inspirational in my yoga practice and Life practice. Beautifully written. ( )
  teandoranges | Feb 5, 2011 |
Matthew Sanford offers his memoir, his story, and invites the readers to experience their own stories via the bridge of yoga and body-mind integration philosophies. Sanford’s narrative is fascinating, inspiring, and absorbing. He has an ability to draw connections of his own very dramatic life experience to the readers life, leading to positive personal introspection. Highly recommended. ( )
  yogiclarebear | Nov 25, 2010 |
Just finished "Waking, A memoir", thanks to another dear LTer, who sent the book to me as a gift.
I'm not quite sure what I want to say in this review, so I might treat it as a work in progress and be back to edit it.
As someone who experienced a Spinal Cord Injury, 2 years ago, I'm always interested to see how people deal with this change in their lives. As with most things, all Spinal Cord Injuries and associated experiences have similarities and differences and I was interested to compare the author's experiences with mine. I was interested in his definitions of "Silence" and "Healing Stories". Noting, that something can be learned from either, no matter if they are good or bad, so to speak.
I don’t feel that his current attitude is very different to mine, much of what he said I had put into practice from early on, however, my injury is a partial paraplegia and not "complete" so I've had more feedback from my injured body from earlier on in my injury than he did and while I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t felt any dissociation to the injured part of my body, it has not been as pronounced nor as prolonged as his. I think anyone who suffers from chronic pain and is able to manage without pain-killers often learns some dissociation as a survival mechanism.
I suspect some things have changed in medical practice and other things stayed the same. Certainly all medical practitioners or PTs should read this book. I still came across practitioners who appeared to be stuck in the 70s with similar attitudes.
Interesting to note, this is a book that does not only cover dealing with physical paralysis but also dealing with a form of "emotional" paralysis, for want of a better word.

I'll be thinking about this book for quite a while, a very compelling read. ( )
  KimB | Nov 7, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 159486845X, Paperback)

Matthew Sanford’s life and body were irrevocably changed at age 13 when his family’s car skidded off a snowy Iowa overpass, killing Matt’s father and sister and leaving him paralyzed from the chest down. This pivotal event set Matt on a lifelong journey, from his intensive care experiences at the Mayo Clinic to becoming a paralyzed yoga teacher and founder of a nonprofit organization. Forced to explore what it truly means to live in a body, he emerges with an entirely new view of being a "whole" person. In this searingly candid memoir he delivers a powerful message about the endurance of the human spirit and of the body that houses it.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:31:52 -0400)

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