On the Awe-Inspiring Bravery of Selma Blair

Selma Blair attends the 2019 Vanity Fair Oscar Party, February 24, 2019, in Beverly Hills.  (Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)

Selma Blair has been an American treasure for so long now, a lot of us feel like we've grown up with her. From coming-of-age awakenings in Cruel Intentions and preppie mean-girling in Legally Blonde to playing a sexy Heathers step-mom and a young Kris Jenner in The People Versus OJ Simpson, Blair has proven herself equally adept at both comedy and drama, both of which have served her well over the last week.

Blair had remained largely unseen since October, when she revealed her multiple sclerosis diagnosis in a candid and moving Instagram post:

Blair reemerged at Vanity Fair's Oscar party last Sunday in a flurry of beautiful, cape-waving drama so breathtaking, she made her cane look less like a necessity and more like a must-have accessory. She triumphed over both mobility issues and tears to serve up the inspiring look, much to the joy of both fans and the media at large:

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Then on Tuesday, Blair was interviewed by Robin Roberts for Good Morning America, even though she was in the midst of dealing with spasmodic dysphonia, a symptom of her MS that prompts her speech to come out in staccato bursts, caused by involuntary movements in the larynx.

Despite this, Blair was in excellent spirits, displaying great humor about her own unsteadiness ("Wouldn't it be funny if I fell in the pool?"), the advice she received from a fellow actor ("I've got Michael J. Fox's email now! I'm cooler than I thought!"), and the difficult decision to get in front of a camera in her current state ("No one has the energy to talk when they’re in the middle of a flare up, but I do, because I love a camera!")

Blair also revealed her struggles with pain management, exhaustion, parenting and not being "taken seriously by doctors" when she was desperately seeking a diagnosis. In the studio afterward, Roberts fought back tears talking about Blair's bravery, as well as the inspiring way the actress is handling her disease and finding ways to channel the lessons from it into new projects, including clothing design.

Blair is the latest celebrity to go public about fighting a chronic illness (Lady Gaga and Selena Gomez have recently spoken up about living with fibromyalgia and lupus respectively). In allowing herself to be vulnerable in public like this, she isn't just raising MS awareness on an international level, she's also inspiring other people dealing with the same disease. And for that, we salute her!

Watch the full interview: 

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