This movie was made by Riley, a high school student from Vermont. She made an award winning short version of the film and then transformed it into a longer more substantial piece.
As Sean’s Mom, I was asked to help with the film. Riley’s Dad was the ICU doctor who kept Sean alive the first night after his overdose. We weren’t sure of the extent of the brain damage but, we hoped he could get through the next 48 hours so a determination could be made.Unfortunately, the damage was severe. The transition to organ donation took place soon after it was determined that Sean have suffered brain death.
I really appreciated the compassion and care of the ICU team. So when asked I said of course I would help. I had no idea that the film would win awards or even be shown at a local cinema.
Of course, I wish I could have used some less stigmatizing language or paid more attention to my hair and make-up. However, it was filmed just a few months after he died and the emotions were pretty raw.
The real gift was I got to practice my story, or my version of Sean’s story. My husband and I presented Sean’s story a few weeks later to our city’s opioid task force. We have been able to testify at our local legislature. So much of this was possible because Riley,
took the time to encourage our story and perfect the message. Sean was a beautiful person, afflicted by mental illness. A disease just like cancer or diabetes, unfortunately because the brain is affected, many choices are self sabotaging.
Riley is generously making the film available free and to the public.