Homesick follows the story of Susan Abod, a singer and songwriter, whose life was turned upside down when she developed MCS and realized her home was making her sick. Her gas stove, moldy basement and her neighbor’s dryer exhaust now brought on severe headaches, body aches, weakness and exhaustion.
She would also get so mentally confused that she would find herself in the middle of a room profoundly disoriented. Her doctor said, “You’re going to have to move and find a safer place to live.” Susan wondered, “Where on earth is that?”
To answer that question, Susan takes to the road, looking for that illusive thing called “safer housing.” She travels to New Mexico, Arizona and Texas where many people with MCS have migrated in search of a less-polluted environment. (The majority of footage was shot in New Mexico.) On that journey, she discovers many people with MCS – architects, housewives, nurses, doctors, lawyers, photographers, artists and students. To her surprise, she finds them living in an incredible array of imaginable and unimaginable housing situations – tents, teepees, cars, air stream trailers, adobes, a screened-in room, a house on stilts, straw bale and other state-of-the-art “healthy homes.” Susan’s journey and experiences as a person with MCS traveling from home to home is the connecting thread..
Susan Abod has been documenting CFIDS and MCS for close to a decade. Her first film, Funny, You Don’t Look Sick: An Autobiography of an Illness(1995, Cinema Guild) painted an intimate portrait of her struggle to live with these debilitating conditions. Funny You Don’t Look Sick premiered at the Museum of Fine Arts in 1995, and was a Merit Award winner at the 2005 SUPERFEST International Disability Film Festival. It has been screened internationally and can be found in doctor’s and lawyer’s offices, university and public libraries, medical classrooms, centers for independent living, support groups and in peoples’ homes all over the world. It is now being distributed by the Cinema Guild of New York.Susan is also a singer and composer. In 2001 she produced a 16-song CD, In The Moment. Susan also composed & performed in a musical for the Living with Aids Theater Project in Boston.