Hollywood actress Selma Blair made a bold statement on the cover of the latest issue of British Vogue, posing with a cane in hand. The actress, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) in 2018, shared her story in a powerful interview, discussing her journey with the disease and her mission to increase visibility and break the stigma surrounding it.
A Symbol of Empowerment
In an elegant beige cut-out dress and matching Valentino heels, Blair proudly holds her cane, calling it her "extension." Speaking to the magazine, the "Cruel Intentions" star revealed, “I have an emotional and physical attachment to the cane.
I settle in my voice and body as soon as I hold [it]”. The actress sees her cane as a symbol of empowerment, saying, “I know it adds to visibility. So many younger people have started publicly embracing their sticks more.
I do think representation matters. If I can help remove stigma or over-curiosity in a crowd for someone else, then that’s great”.
It took more than 40 years of silent pain for Hollywood star @SelmaBlair to receive her multiple sclerosis (MS) diagnosis.
A Journey with MS
Multiple sclerosis is a disease that affects the central nervous system, including the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves, according to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Blair became an advocate for the disability community after her diagnosis, and spoke about why she retired from acting. “My autoimmune system was misfiring… losing most of my hair and all of my energy. I kinda bowed out [after filming “Kath & Kim” in 2009],” she explained.
On set, the actress found it "excruciating" to deal with the exhaustion and tics caused by the illness. However, Blair's story took a turn when she made her first post-diagnosis public appearance at the 2019 Vanity Fair Oscars Party, hitting the red carpet in a colorful caped Ralph & Russo Couture gown, cane in hand.
“I didn’t imagine I could ever make a difference by showing up as myself and being open about my experiences,” she told British Vogue. “But when others with mobility aids rallied around my presence on the red carpet with a cane and in the midst of an MS flare, I noticed.
I felt empowered to share… Now it’s a conscious choice to”.
A Call for Inclusivity
Blair is now standing up for the disability community, calling for more inclusivity in the industry. “I hope for more inclusivity as I and others continue to bring attention to the condition,” she said.
The actress, who shares son Arthur with fashion designer Jason Bleick, is using her platform to raise awareness and break the stigma surrounding MS. With her powerful cover shoot and interview, Blair is inspiring others to embrace their individuality and stand up for what they believe in.