Michael J. Fox Recalls ‘Denial’ Years Following Parkinson’s Diagnosis

Michael J. Fox Recalls ‘Denial’ Years Following Parkinson’s Diagnosis: Michael J. Fox said of his Parkinson’s diagnosis and foundation when receiving the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, an honorary Oscar, at the Governors Awards, “But it genuinely has been a gift.” Michael J. Fox is thinking back on his horrific experience with Parkinson’s.

At the 13th Governors Awards on Saturday in Los Angeles, the Back to the Future actor, 61, stated that his Parkinson’s “really has been a gift” as he won the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, an honorary Oscar recognizing exceptional charity work.

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In his acceptance speech for the last brief homage, he stated, “It was a gift, as my friend George Stephanopoulos pointed out in a film. Parkinson’s is what I mean when I say it’s a gift that keeps giving. However, it has been a gift.

Every interaction, every new piece of knowledge I obtained, and every researcher or NIH official I spoke to proved that the science was put ahead of the money after I got interested in learning about the disease. With the correct funding, the solutions might become available, Fox added.

He talked about leaving Canada in his senior year of high school, receiving his GED later, being famous on Family Ties, falling in love, raising a family, and realizing he had Parkinson’s disease when he was about 29.

“I was informed that I only had ten more years to work. It wasn’t delicious. That is what took place. Fox reflected that dealing with the certainty of the diagnosis and the uncertainty of the circumstance was the most challenging aspect of my diagnosis.

“I knew that things would worsen. He stated the diagnosis was sure, but the course of action was vague and unpredictable. “Tracy Pollan, my wife, said she would be by my side throughout. Sam, though, my small son, was unaware. He had no other option.

Fox and Pollan, who are both 62 years old, married in 1988. They have four children: son Sam Michael, 33; twin daughters Aquinnah Kathleen and Schuyler Frances, 27; and daughter Esmé Annabelle, 21.

“After that, I went through seven years of denial while attempting to make sense of everything. The young person who left Canada believing that, at the very least, through hard work and belief, he could achieve anything now faced a challenging task, the speaker added.

Fox claimed, “I only told a few people, and they kept my secret. Then, various medical professionals helped me comprehend the physical processes that were, or were not, taking place in my brain. Finally, I felt compelled to inform everyone.

I was aware that it would significantly affect my career. Remember that this was in the internet’s infancy; the Golden Globe winner claimed that he “had to find out how to deliver the news effectively, so I told Barbara Walters and PEOPLE Magazine. 

And back then, Barbara Walters and PEOPLE Magazine were the go-to sources for breaking news. Oh, for more innocent times. What followed was astounding, he said. “The overwhelming support from the general public, the amazing response from all of my peers in the entertainment industry, thank you everyone, and the folks I worked with, was transforming.”

“I then got in touch with the Parkinson’s community directly. Patients, families, physicians, and top researchers in the area. And it occurred to me that everything I had—success, my relationship with Tracy, my family—had equipped me for this enormous opportunity and responsibility.

Fox said he “didn’t want to name it that,” adding with a chuckle: “I wanted to call it PD cure.” Fox established the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research in 2000, which has already raised over $1.5 billion. And once I told Tracy, she inquired, “Pedicure? “

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