US actress Selma Blair has spoken about her life with multiple sclerosis, four months after she was diagnosed.
“I really feel like people with disabilities are invisible to a lot of people,” she told Vanity Fair magazine.
But the star, who appeared with a cane at an Oscars party on Sunday, added: “There’s no tragedy for me. I’m happy.
“I don’t know if I believed in myself or had the ambition before my diagnosis. And oddly now I do, and I don’t know if it’s too late.”
MS is an incurable condition affecting the brain or spinal cord, causing vision, balance and muscle problems.
The actress is known for films including Cruel Intentions and Legally Blonde, and will star in Netflix’s forthcoming sci-fi drama Another Life.
She said: “If I can help anyone be more comfortable in their skin, it’s more than I’ve ever done before.”
Blair revealed she had MS on Instagram last October. “It wasn’t about announcing a dramatic diagnosis,” she told Vanity Fair.
“I had no idea, for some reason, that news outlets would pick it up or anything. When they did, I was kind of uncomfortable.
“Then I was worried, thinking, ‘Will anyone hire me?’ I reconnected with so many people who thought I might drop dead soon!”
Those who got in touch included Amy Schumer, whose father has MS.
Blair’s health has continued to deteriorate. “I also never thought I’d get this bad, to tell you the truth,” she said.
She struggles with movement, memory, dressing and is struggling with her vision after a bad reaction to a high-dose glucocorticoid treatment.
She says she now looks and sounds so different that it has changed her relationship with her seven-year-old son Arthur.
“He wants to be closer to my body more, and I can tell he wants to make sure I’m still here inside. I used to be so athletic with him. Now I fall in front of him.
“There’s a humility and a joy I have now, albeit a fatigued joy.”
She added: “I’m pretty much a nobody in Hollywood.
“But when I read comments on Instagram from people who were suffering, whether it was from MS, or anything, I thought, there’s a need for honesty about being disabled from someone recognisable.”
She is also keen to team up with a fashion designer because she says there’s a lack of stylish clothing for disabled people.
“I would like to partner with someone like Christian Siriano on a line for everyone – not just people who necessarily need adaptive clothing, but for those who want comfort, too.
“It can still be chic. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice style. Like, let’s get elastic waistbands to look a little bit better.”
Blair appeared on the red carpet for the Vanity Fair Oscars party on Sunday, using a black cane for support.
“A cane, I think, can be a great fashion accessory,” she said.