Three or so weeks ago very capable and resourceful Dawn saw something come through her email about an HBO Documentary’s MONICA & DAVID and she wondered if we could help preview it for an article to share with our community members on Support for Special Needs. She thought we’d get a great interview, be able to see the film and share it here. Sounds simple, right?
Fast forward a couple of days and it turned into a private screening that we were hosting as our first in real life event. We were thrilled and excited and we kept pinching each other (telephonically). We reached out to special needs friendly AMC Theaters who graciously agreed to host the event at their Atlanta AMC Phipps Plaza. GM Ken and Manager Virginia were the nicest people! Highly recommend you see a movie there!
Last night, with nearly 50 people I was able to introduce the cinemaphotograher, Abel Klainbaum and after the screening he answered questions from the audience. It was really moving to hear what he had to say about the Monica & David and their families. Lovely actually. This was a labor of love, that is for sure.
I hope you will see this documentary. If you have children with special needs, if you love a family that has a child with special needs For people not close to a special needs family, it’s a wonderful way to see some of the issues facing families like ours. If you don’t have HBO, I’m guessing it will come out on DVD.
Now what did I think about the MONICA & DAVID? I thought it was fantastic! It was an extremely personal example of parents wanting their kids to live the best life possible for them – and creating the opportunities for them to do so.
I was struck by both the mothers’ ability to let go and figure out the best way to let their kids live within what we all want – to love and be loved. One of the most insightful things (to me) said by Monica’s mother was that parents of children with special needs have to protect them, but out of that protection, we’re often the ones who treat them poorly – that we shield them from living a full life.
I have to say I did tear up a couple of times both for happy and sad feelings I was having. Thinking about the future of my kids and my fears for them because I want them to be happy and have the kind of life they want was hard for me because it’s hard to picture what their lives will look like. I loved how MONICA & DAVID’s marriage, while different, was a lot like other marriages! She’d tell him how to make the bed and fix the pillows just so! I was charmed by Monica’s directness!
I cried too, because I was so moved by Monica and David’s love for each other. It’s pure and sweet and they are happy. Also, though, it’s complicated. Much like the lives of families of children with special needs.
I flipped through the comment cards and I saw all 4s/5s out of a scale of 1-5 and that everyone would recommend it. Some of the comments were, “Wonderful!” “Thanks for sharing this documentary with us!” “I learned something and I’m already immersed in parenting children with special needs!” “I loved MONICA & DAVID so I hope that we get to see a follow-up one day!” It airs on HBO this Thursday.