Actress Patty Duke's life in Couer d'Alene, Idaho, is filled with happy, everyday moments such as taking her granddaughters to dance and gymnastics lessons, cooking for Thanksgiving and enjoying time with her husband of almost 25 years.
As she hosted a conference call recently to promote her latest movie, â€œUnanswered Prayers,â€ which debuts at 8 tonight on Lifetime, she welcomed each person on the line individually, joked about the cold weather and spoke honestly about her journey that got her to this point in life.
â€œI've been very lucky,â€ she said. â€œI have a very full plate.â€
Her contented life these days is far from the time she won an Oscar for â€œThe Miracle Workerâ€ in 1962, became famous as the child star of â€œThe Patty Duke Showâ€ which aired from 1963-66, and later became known for her hard life, marriages, substance abuse, mood swings and other off-screen antics before she finally was diagnosed and received treatment for bipolar disorder.
She has since written two best-selling books about her life, â€œCall Me Annaâ€ and â€œA Brilliant Madness: Living With Manic Depression Illness.â€
Duke, who is about to turn 64, thanks God that some of her own prayers went unanswered in her youth.
â€œI attempted suicide a number of times. I'm very glad that prayer wasn't answered. I obviously had more to do here. I thank God and the professionals in the medical world who made it possible.â€
Lifetime's â€œUnanswered Prayersâ€ is based on the 1990 hit song by Oklahoman Garth Brooks, the Grammy Award-winning country music artist who was an executive producer on the show along with Lisa Sanderson, producing partner and chief executive of Red Strokes Entertainment.
The television movie stars Eric Close as a happily married father who encounters his high school flame, played by Madchen Amick, and wonders what could have been ... with her. Duke stars as the man's mother-in-law. Samantha Mathis plays his wife.