People Magazine reported today that five months after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, actress Selma Blair has “been grieving” her old life but is “still grateful” for what she can do. For those of us living with multiple sclerosis, this is an all too familiar process. At first diagnosis and with each subsequent exacerbation or major progression, we must grieve and learn to accept our “new normal.
Blair took time on Thanksgiving, her first since her diagnosis, to reflect on her new life with MS.
“Thanksgiving is dwindling down for me. I stayed home. It was the right place for me today. And tears came,” the actress, 46, wrote on Instagram. “I have been grieving recently. For the things I took for granted.”
Blair said she would do previously-easy tricks to amuse her son, Arthur Saint Bleick, 7.
“I was the most gymnastic mom I knew,” she said. “A cartwheel was just as easy as taking a breath. But when I began to turn one yesterday on an impulse to show my son who had forgotten, it went all wrong. A jumble of confusion for this body I knew so well. A heap. A heap on the ground. And I tried to laugh. As did my son. But it was a turning point. Part of the grim realization. Is this just #ms or is this still an exacerbation? Five months and still same way. Or is this my new normal? And then more gets taken away.”
Blair thanked her fans for supporting her as she continues to figure out life with MS.
“We all have something. Now how do we handle it? What do we do when the news is old but dramatically altering our lives every day?” she said. “Still grateful.”
Blair first revealed that she has MS on Oct. 20, two months after learning the news from her doctor.
“I am in the thick of it but I hope to give some hope to others. And even to myself. You can’t get help unless you ask,” she wrote. “I have had symptoms for years but was never taken seriously until I fell down in front of him trying to sort out what I thought was a pinched nerve. I have probably had this incurable disease for 15 years at least. And I am relieved to at least know. And share.”
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a potentially disabling disease of the brain and spinal cord (central nervous system).
In MS, the immune system attacks the protective sheath (myelin) that covers nerve fibers and causes communication problems between your brain and the rest of your body. Eventually, the disease can cause the nerves themselves to deteriorate or become permanently damaged.