Selma Blair is allowing everyone to hear her voice for the first time since announcing her multiple sclerosis (MS) diagnosis last October.
MS is a potentially disabling disease of the brain and spinal cord, according to the Mayo Clinic. On Tuesday, Blair, 46, appeared in Good Morning America in an "exacerbation" of MS – resulting in spasmodic dysphonia, a condition that alters his voice.
"I'm very happy to be able to explain what it's like to be in the middle of an aggressive form of multiple sclerosis," Legally Blonde actress told interviewer Robin Roberts.
"It's interesting to put it out there, to be here to say," That's how my particular case is now, "she said.
Blair, who suffers from an aggressive form of the disease, is doing well and is still working. She has a new show from Netflix Another life, and hit the red carpet at the Oscar Vanity Fair party on Sunday night with the help of a walking stick.
For years, Blair knew something was not right, but he did not get the answers he needed until last summer.
"Since my son was born, I was in an outbreak of multiple sclerosis and did not know, and was giving everything to look normal," she recalled. Her son, Arthur, whom she shares with former Jason Bleick, is now 7 years old.
"And I was self-medicating when he was not with me," she said. "I was drinking. I was in pain. I was not always drinking, but there were times when I could not stand it.
Blair faced tiresome days. She said that simple tasks, such as taking the child to school, would make her tired, forcing her to doze off before returning home.
"I was embarrassed and was doing the best I could and I was a great mother, but it was killing me," said the actress. "And then, when I received the diagnoses, I cried a little relief. Like, "Oh, well, I can do something."
She also cried because "she had to give in to a body that had loss of control."
Talking to Arthur about his health, he seemed to welcome the news.
"And he almost cried and said," Is that going to kill you? ", She reminded him. "And I said," No. I mean, we never know what kills us, Arthur, but this is not the doctor who tells me I'm dying. " And he was like "Oh, okay" and that was it.
At the time of her diagnosis, her doctor said that within a year she could have 90% of her skills back.
"Let's meet again in a year and see if I'm better. If I'm not, and I can still talk, that's good enough."
Blair admitted he was "a little afraid" of sitting down for the interview given the way the outbreak of multiple sclerosis affected his speech.
"My neurologist said," No, this will bring a lot of awareness, because no one has the energy to talk when they're in an outbreak. "But I love it because I love a camera!
Roberts was moved to "tears of joy" after the interview – and fans everywhere are applauding Blair for his bravery:
I just renewed my @SelmaBlair fan card for another 20 years. Address a commonly misunderstood diagnosis with such thoughtful responses, keeping viewers at home laughing with it.
"Nobody has the energy to talk when they are in crisis, but I love them – because I love a camera! pic.twitter.com/PorGjwBG76
– omri (@ Omri_Rawrlan) February 26, 2019
My mother had MS, it's a fucking disease, but the power that radiates from Selma Blair is inspiring to watch https://t.co/kH8nwdJkgx
– Chris (@ chrisw0440) February 26, 2019
This is the most powerful thing I've seen in a long time. We are stronger than #MRS! She said it took so long for her to be there, so I hope she knows how great a moment is for us in MS and #chronic disease communities. #SelmaBlair pic.twitter.com/Rt6jhvl0WP
– Fªunª (@msfaunaa) February 25, 2019
I love you so much! "I love a camera," so lovely, brave and inspiring for anyone with MS or any other health problem, and fearless to talk about it so dramatically. Brave
– Theresa B., Texas Tee formerly known as Ninja (@TBoisseauATX) February 26, 2019
Selma's honesty and fearlessness make me love her more than I ever did. As someone who also suffers from autoimmune diseases, it is difficult for others to understand the anguish, exhaustion and frustration when you can not be everything to everyone, even if it was your norm. (I.e.
– ??????? ???????? (@MelissaMermaid) February 26, 2019
MOOD: "Because I love a camera."
** hair fin **
– Mikaela Slaney (@MayaySl) February 26, 2019
This story originally appeared in the New York Post and is republished here with permission.