The new documentary, The Healing of Heather Garden, has been dubbed ‘Story of Hope’ by many. Mary Jane Eason, co-host of CKUW’s Wooden Spoons show, calls it a “flash point film.” The story, by local filmmaker Judith Morrow, sends a message that resonates.
Morrow tells the compelling story of Heather Garden’s journey. From devastating Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis — where she experienced repeated attacks of paralysis and neurological breakdown, painful hospital treatments and increasing disability with no hope of recovery — to discovery of a different way of looking at her healing. Since regaining her ability to walk without a cane or wheelchair in 2002, Heather has remained in vibrant health. The film documents exactly how Heather Garden went from being crippled with MS to achieving a full recovery by using alternative health methods.
“This documentary, has been in the making for nearly a decade,” says Morrow of this, her first film. “We want to show there is a way – not a ‘quick fix’, but a way of following your own path of wisdom and common sense that can give dramatic results.”
In the film, we see that when Heather rejects conventional medicine in favour of a more alternative route, she suffers financially as she forfeits her disability insurance support payments. Yet, it becomes clear to Heather that she must listen closely to what she knows intuitively about becoming healthy. Her determination to find her best path to health allows her to connect with the people and the community she needed to achieve her successful healing.
“We believe people need partners on their journey who are informed, supportive and encouraging of expanding their choices,” says Morrow. “We see a need for ‘conventional’ and ‘alternative’ approaches, that follow sound health principles, to work together.”
The Winnipeg screening of May 28th,2013, at Cinematheque was advertised by word of mouth and brought 150 people out, requiring two screenings to accommodate all who attended.
The audience was a diverse mix, from those in the local film industry (44 people from Winnipeg’s film community were involved in the film), to medical people, to those seeking options in their own journey, to general entertainment. Most were touched by Heather’s strength and encouraged by the film’s message.
“It’s an amazing, inspiring and thought provoking documentary,” says Sherrie Novak, Organizational Development Consultant. “Heather’s story is certainly one of unrelenting courage and sheer determination in the face of strong opposition and daunting physical challenges. I left the screening with much hope for those who are challenged with MS and for those who search for alternative approaches to healing that which ails them.”
“To my mind,” says lawyer Victor Olsen, “Heather found a holistic, comprehensive change in her life which preceded her miraculous recovery from something she was not going to overcome with regular treatment. A holistic lifestyle does not necessarily mean any one type of lifestyle. An understanding of your own lifestyle and what it is doing to you can help you with illnesses and cure things that would otherwise defeat medical science.”
“We hope that our documentary helps build a supportive network that expand the range of choice available to people,” Morrow says.
The next screening of The Healing of Heather Garden is tonight, Monday, June 24th at the Gas Station Theatre, 455 River Avenue. Doors open at 6:30 pm and the show starts at 7:00 pm. Tickets are $10. Online at www.thehealingofheathergarde.com or at McNally Robinson. Discounts for students and low-income available at the door.
Morrow also has her film available as a digital download for $9.99 from the website as well as a DVD and Blu Ray. You can reach Judith Morrow at email@example.com
You may also want to check out a previous CNC story on the premiere screening of The Healing of Heather Garden, which took place in Boissevein.