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Jewish Mom Selma Blair Opens up About Having MS

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Actress Selma Blair just opened up about having MS in an incredibly moving Instagram post. The Jewish actress, whose Hebrew name is Bat-Sheva, has risen to fame with iconic roles in movies like Cruel Intentions and She’s All That. More recently, she’s gotten acclaim for her role as Kardashian matriarch Kris Jenner in The People v. O.J. Simpson.

As a longtime fan, I truly believe Blair is an underrated actress — I love her versatility and enjoyed her in many indie roles, like in the cult Hellboy franchise. She is currently filming a new Netflix show called Another Life.

In her post, Blair — who is mom to Arthur, 7 — went into painful detail of what her diagnosis means, also stating that she’s probably had MS for the last 15 years, writing, “I am disabled. I fall sometimes. I drop things. My memory is foggy. And my left side is asking for directions from a broken gps.” She wrote that she struggles to put on clothes and that Allisa Swanson, her costume designer on her new show, has become her unofficial dresser, helping her get dressed for shoots.

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I was in this wardrobe fitting two days ago. And I am in the deepest gratitude. So profound, it is, I have decided to share. The brilliant costumer #Allisaswanson not only designs the pieces #harperglass will wear on this new #Netflix show , but she carefully gets my legs in my pants, pulls my tops over my head, buttons my coats and offers her shoulder to steady myself. I have #multiplesclerosis . I am in an exacerbation. By the grace of the lord, and will power and the understanding producers at Netflix , I have a job. A wonderful job. I am disabled. I fall sometimes. I drop things. My memory is foggy. And my left side is asking for directions from a broken gps. But we are doing it . And I laugh and I don’t know exactly what I will do precisely but I will do my best. Since my diagnosis at ten thirty pm on The night of August 16, I have had love and support from my friends , especially @jaime_king @sarahmgellar @realfreddieprinze @tarasubkoff @noah.d.newman . My producers #noreenhalpern who assured me that everyone has something. #chrisregina #aaronmartin and every crew member… thank you. 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. It can be overwhelming in the beginning. You want to sleep. You always want to sleep. So I don’t have answers. You see, I want to sleep. But I am a forthcoming person and I want my life to be full somehow. I want to play with my son again. I want to walk down the street and ride my horse. I have MS and I am ok. But if you see me , dropping crap all over the street, feel free to help me pick it up. It takes a whole day for me alone. Thank you and may we all know good days amongst the challenges. And the biggest thanks to @elizberkley who forced me to see her brother #drjasonberkley who gave me this diagnosis after finding lesions on that mri. 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. 🖤 my instagram family… you know who you are.

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Blair went on to thank her friends and family for their help. She especially thanks fellow Jewish actress and mama Elizabeth Berkley — who played Jessie in Saved By the Bell — who “forced” Blair to see her brother, a doctor, who gave her the diagnosis this August.

Multiple sclerosis is a condition which causes damage to the insulating covers of nerve cells of the brain and spinal system, disrupting the nervous system’s ability to communicate.  The cause of the disease is unknown and the severity of its symptoms vary from person to person.

Blair, who was born Selma Blair Beitner, grew up in suburban Detroit, where she attended a Jewish day school.

Another Jewish friend that Blair thanked in her emotional post, actress Sarah Michelle Gellar, wrote in an Instagram comment: “I love you, I’m proud of you, and there is nothing I wouldn’t do for you.”

Possibly the most painful part of the post was Blair’s longing to play with her son. On Instagram, her love for her child is always palpable —  I was especially moved by a throwback picture the actress posted in honor of her son’s first day of first grade, back in August, when I was a few weeks away from the end of my maternity leave.

The picture is of her, with her then-infant son, strolling down the beach six years ago, with fellow Jewish mom Pink. “I was scared. I couldn’t picture ever being able to leave him,” Blair wrote. “My biggest responsibility. He started first grade yesterday. I did leave him. I am working. Making plans. Counting the days until I hold him near again. No matter how far, our loved ones know we still are here. I am here. You are here.”

I am so grateful for Blair’s message of strength and openness. I hope she has many happy years of playing with her son, in spite of her recent diagnosis. Stay strong, mama!

 

The opinions expressed here are the personal views of the author. Comments are moderated, so use your inside voices, keep your hands to yourself, and no, we're not interested in herbal supplements.

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