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Selma Blair on Sunday made her first appearance since announcing her multiple sclerosis diagnosis in October. The actress stepped out at the Vanity Fair Oscars party wearing a Ralph and Russo caped gown — and a custom cane.
Producer David Lyons found patent leather that was stitched on, and then Hollywood manicurist Tom Bachik customized her cane with her monogram and pink diamonds to make it “especially magical,” Blaire wrote on Instagram. “How did I get so lucky? I wanted a special cane for #vanityfair dinner.” She added, “I burst into tears. These gifts to get me through.”
Ralph & Russo wrote on Instagram that Blair “exudes confidence” while wearing the pleated chiffon gown and cape with a geometric bodice. Stylist Elizabeth Stewart, who said she was “so happy” to work with Blair that night, added a choker encrusted with Swarovski crystals and opals from Ralph & Russo’s haute couture collection.
On the carpet, Blair’s former publicist turned manager Troy Nankin helped her get the gown into place as she dramatically flipped her cape and posed with the cane.
“There are moments that define us. This is one of those indelibly watermarked in my heart,” the actress wrote. “I have become a different woman in the last few years, through struggles and the intense pride of motherhood. … This was a streak of light. To say I am here. I am still in an exacerbation so there was some nervousness. I don’t do anything the way I was once able. I will though. I can regain much. Mommas gotta work. And I will be able to do so much more on my own.”
“I felt the love from the photographers who have watched me goof around on red carpets since I was in my twenties. I felt the warmth of the bulbs,” she added. “I sobbed. And I appreciated every single second. … We got me just where I wanted to be. For a night.”
Lyon, looking on at Blair from the Vanity Fair carpet, wrote that she even had Tom Ford respectfully watching. “A view I will never forget, from the sidelines, of the most amazing display of courage and grace,” he wrote.
On Tuesday, Blair appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America in an interview with Robin Roberts, where she talked about her condition, including spasmodic dysphonia or spasmic speech: “It is interesting to put it out there, to be there to say this is what my particular case looks like.”
Blair told Roberts she cried at her diagnosis: “They were tears of knowing I now had to give in to a body that had loss of control, and there was some relief in that.”
The Legally Blonde and Cruel Intentions star opened up about how she would need to take a nap between dropping her kid off at school and the mile drive home. “I was giving it everything to seem normal,” including self-medicating and drinking, she said. “There were times I couldn’t take it. … I was ashamed.”
Actor Michael J. Fox, who has Parkinson’s disease, got in touch with Blair and they began to talk regularly. “He really helped me,” she said. And though Blair was initially disbelieved by doctors, now they tell her she could get 90 percent of her abilities back.
“I was a little scared of talking, and even my neurologist said, ‘No, this will bring a lot of awareness, because no one has the energy to talk when they’re in a flare-up.’ But I do, because I love a camera,” Blair said.
There are moments that define us. This is one of those indelibly watermarked in my heart. This is #troynankin ; my former publicist turned manager , best friend , and fake husband. We joke. I have become a different woman in the last few years, through struggles and the intense pride of motherhood. @vanityfair has always been a champion of mine, like Troy. And yet, I have not fully realized my capabilities as an actress. I wanted to be at this red carpet to remember my first time attending with a not yet famous friend, @jakegyllenhaal . I believed in him and his career and wanted him there. And this dinner always symbolizes so much. And I kept going because it was always a night in hollywood that was full of hollywood dreams with all the talent present in their glory. I loved to watch. I was invited this year. I am featured in March issue . Thank you @radhikajones @kristasmith @samiranasr #juliemiller @cassblackbird . So this was a streak of light. To say I am here. I am still in an exacerbation so there was some nervousness. I don’t do anything the way I was once able. I will though. I can regain much. Mommas gotta work. And I will be able to do so much more on my own, But this man. Until that comes …This man and a host of others light the way and hold the moon @thetexastroya was a hero. Wanting me to shine brightly in a time that can be so challenging. He knew I wanted to be able to stand proudly as the woman I have become and hope to be. To be a part of something so special when my body won’t move clearly yet. And then I felt the love from the photographers who have watched me goof around on red carpets since I was in my twenties. I felt the warmth of the bulbs. The strength of my gown. His attentive touch. And still I hoped my brain could send signals for the remainder of my time there. And I sobbed. And I appreciated every single second. Every surprising tear, he was there. As he has always been. And that is the reason I could. Thank you Troy. We got me just where I wanted to be. For a night. And I later pushed my way into a family photo with @dianaross (omg) . So much to post but not before this one. True love. Right here. Forever.
A post shared by Selma Blair (@selmablair) on
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Portia de Rossi
James Gordon Meek