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Short Documentary on Multiple Sclerosis Inspires

documentary on multiple sclerosis

A 20-minute documentary on multiple sclerosis, entitled simply “SM” (the original title in Polish) offers a poignant look at the lives, thoughts, and goals of three people with the disease. The two women and one man, who range in age from 20 to 61, demonstrate the universality of the determination, hope, and challenges of the disease.


The documentary on multiple sclerosis (see below) was written and directed by Ilona Bidzan, a psychologist, and filmed in Poland. The subtitled film shares the stories of 20-year-old Gabriela Zenka, a dancer; 41-year-old Wojciech Stanko, a photographer; and 61-year-old Emilia Ratajczak, a painter.

Bidzan told Multiple Sclerosis News Today that the documentary is “a journey into the depths of human mind in search for an answer to a question: how important are will power and fortitude in our life?” and about three individuals “who decide to change their life after hearing the diagnosis and against all odds live.”

Wojciech, for example, decided he would not the disease beat him and focused on what would seem to many to be an impossible goal: running a marathon. Then the relapses started, and with them a variety of life-altering symptoms. Does he keep running?

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As an artist, Emilia depended on her hands to create. When she lost the use of her hands, she stated that “I couldn’t get round to painting with my mouth.”

Finally, however, she tried it, and then decided that “it really doesn’t matter whether you hold a brush in your hand or mouth or your feet. All that matters is the skill inside of you.” Is she able to feel fulfilled with this new way of painting?

Gabriela was participating in dance tournaments and winning awards. Then she started losing the feeling in her left leg. Has she been able to continue to dance?

Each of the individuals in the documentary offer their unique perspective on the illness and what it means to them. Perhaps their words and actions will resonate with you or someone you know who has multiple sclerosis.

Multiple Sclerosis News Today