In many ways, Liz Weintraub and I are opposites. She loves talking to anyone who will listen, I prefer to express myself behind the computer screen or camera. But with Tuesdays with Liz, Liz brings out the same, human qualities of everyone involved.
I feel incredibly privileged each time I get to film Liz and a guest on the show. She asks the magically humble question, “why?” and out pour the stories. One person doesn’t want her wheelchair damaged by an airline. A couple chooses not to get married because their Medicaid would be taken away. A young person goes to college, a mother talks about her pregnancy story, a congressman talks about access to doctors. If you’re a guest on the show, the moral of the story is that no one wants to be left out. Everyone wants to live a happy, healthy and free life.
Disability is a part of the human experience. The beauty of the show is that no matter how our guests describe their relationship with disability or chronic illness, with policy or research, their descriptions are valid. No one understands anyone else’s experience better than them, which is why Tuesdays with Liz is so amazing: real people are sharing their story with
Liz lives out her dream of interviewing people, teaching others about disability policy in plain language. With each new guest comes a new perspective, and we never run out of topics to highlight. Liz wants to interview members of the AUCD network just as badly as she wants to
interview members of Congress: every person sheds a new light on disability, and everything is connected to policy and advocacy.
The beep of the camera when I hit the record button still always makes me hold my breath. Diagnosed with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS) as an adult, my whole life has been refocused through the lens of disability, and so when I was given the opportunity to help other people with disabilities and people who care about us share their stories, I was beyond thrilled. EDS is a rare condition that at once causes me to be hypermobile, or bendy, and to be in pain. Like my symptoms, I am a flexible producer, sensitive to the information shared by our guests and turned on all the time; I am always thinking, “this would make a great episode,” etc…
Disability storytelling helps people get their message across in a way that impacts audiences emotionally, and in a way that is easy to understand. Tuesdays with Liz uses plain language so that all people feel comfortable enjoying the episodes, including people with developmental disabilities. A transcript is provided so blind and deafblind audiences can enjoy
the show. As producer of Tuesdays with Liz , I’ve learned that sharing your perspective is a powerful, authentic advocacy, something everyone can relate to.
As episodes show Liz asking more commentary and follow-up questions, it is my hope that viewers take with them not only the questions Liz asks, not only the answers guests give, but the general belief and sentiment that storytelling is important, and that there’s always a story to find, there’s always a question to ask, there’s always more to learn. Seeing Liz ask a basic question like, “What do you mean by that?” is a great example for me, and others, to know that it is okay to ask questions, that there will be no judgement from asking. As Liz often says, “Your voice matters.”
You can watch all episodes of Tuesdays with Liz at