I couldn't help but cry when Shari Tritt used sign language to answer if she ever thought she would get married. She doubted than anyone would love and accept her without a normal speaking voice, uncontrollable drool and her body contorted. But then the interviewer asked her what about Ira? Shari responded with tears in her eyes, "He saw my heart". For that moment in time the camera caught one of the best things about the human spirit...the power of love.
Dystonia was a foreign word to me before I saw Twisted on PBS' [i]ndependent Lens. What was dystonia? Who did it effect? And how did it come to find itself on my favorite TV channel?
What is dystonia? The film's website says " dystonia is a neurological disorder that forces your muscles into abnormal, often painful, movements or postures. Dystonia can affect one muscle group, or your whole body; it can cause your body to twist. It is as though your brain has a mind of its own." Wikipedia puts it this way: "The disorder may be inherited or caused by other factors such as birth-related or other physical trauma, infection or reaction to drugs."
Who is effected by it? Shari Tritt (who was born with the genes), Pat Brogan (a basketball coach who was hit by a car) and 30,000 others in the United States.
Who produced the documentary? Laurel Chiten wrote, directed, produced and narratored this film. She was was diagnosed with dystonia when she was 17.
I can't even begin to tell you how beautiful and touching this documentary was, and the clip below doesn't do justice to the depth of this subject. Hopefully you will catch a re-run of Twisted on PBS, buy the DVD, organize a screening, or maybe even do all three. Stories like these are rare jewels in the sludge of TV programming and that's why PBS is still the best station on television. Hopefully, the rest of the country will wake-up and realize that.
For more info visit the official website for Twisted and PBS.org