SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (October 27, 2021) – Shari Finsilver is this year’s Honorary Chair and keynote speaker at the Nov. 11 event, invited because of the dedication she has shown in advocating for fellow ET sufferers, and for the courage she has shown in reclaiming her life.
When Shari Finsilver was 19 years old, she was eating a holiday dinner with her family when her spoon flew out of her hand, landing across the room. Her mom was horrified. “She really thought I had Parkinson’s disease and rushed me to a neurologist,” explains Finsilver.
As a young girl, Finsilver had become adept at hiding her Essential Tremor (ET), a condition which is believed to affect 5% of the population, and which varies widely in severity. Some people have a tremor in their hands and arms, others might have it in their head or other body parts.
Finsilver had first noticed the condition when she started art classes in middle school: Unlike other children, she was incapable of drawing a straight line. As she got older, the Orchard Lake resident became an expert at making adaptations to normal activities most of us take for granted. “In high school I learned to put paper on a clipboard and balance the board on the edge of a desk and write at an angle,” she explains. “I mostly ate sandwiches when I was out so I could balance my elbows on the table, and I’d never eat soup. I used a straw for drinks. Like many sufferers, I was very good at working out how to disguise my symptoms.”
Finsilver’s remarkable story, which includes deep brain stimulation surgery, will be shared at the 13th Annual JVS Human Services Trade Secrets event, which raises money for Women to Work, a program which has been changing women’s lives since the 1980s by providing important skills to women needing immediate employment. Finsilver is this year’s Honorary Chair and keynote speaker at the Nov. 11 event, invited because of the dedication she has shown in advocating for fellow ET sufferers, and for the courage she has shown in reclaiming her life.
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