Michael J. Fox has long been living with complications brought on by his battle with Parkinson’s disease, but he remains as defiant as ever in the face of extreme adversity.
The now-retired-actor has become the face of the fight against the debilitating disease over the years, committing himself to promoting researching and understanding since first being diagnosed in the early ’90s.
Of late, the Back to the Future star has spoken candidly on his struggles with the condition, admitting that his health is declining and claiming that he doesn’t think he’ll live to see 80 years old.
Historically, the 61 has often projected optimism about his Parkinson’s diagnosis and has never been one to mask the toll it has taken on his health and wellbeing.
In a recent interview, Fox discussed the subject of his mortality, saying that living with Parkinson’s was “gettin’ tougher”.
“I’m not gonna lie. It’s gettin’ hard, it’s gettin’ harder. It’s gettin’ tougher,” Fox told CBS Sunday Morning anchor Jane Pauley.
“Every day it’s tougher. But, but, that’s, that’s the way it is. I mean, you know, who do I see about that?”
He added that he recently had spinal surgery after a tumor was found on his spine. While it was benign, it affected his ability to walk, and was injured from falling: “[I] broke this arm, and I broke this arm, I broke this elbow. I broke my face. I broke my hand,” Fox told Pauley.
“You don’t die from Parkinson’s. You die with Parkinson’s,” Fox concluded. “I’ve been thinking about the mortality of it. … I’m not gonna be 80. I’m not gonna be 80.”
Fox’s fight with the brain disorder – which he was diagnosed with in 1991 after noticing a tremor he had developed in his pinkie finger – has once again come to the fore in the build-up to the release of his new documentary Still, which covers the actor’s life over the course of the past three decades.
As per reports, he admits in the film: “I’m in intense pain. Each tremor is like a seismic jolt.”
He elaborated on the statement in a new interview with The Times newspaper, saying: “It’s not so much pain from the movement, but from the not moving. It’s when you freeze, and in that freezing that not-movement becomes infused with all this energy and it becomes this burning, impending thing that never happens.
“I don’t want to get the violins out. I’ve broken my hand, my elbow, my humerus, my other humerus, my shoulder, my face and some other s— too. And all that stuff is amplified by the electricity of the tremors. So, yes, it hurts a lot. But what you learn is that nobody gives a s—. It’s just life. It doesn’t matter. You suck it up and you move on. And there might be a story to tell in it. But only that. There’s no chit that you can present to a window for a refund.”
Ever determined to remain optimistic despite his obvious struggles, Fox gallantly promised that he’s not “going anywhere”.
The actor, who formally retired in 2021 due to his declining health, said: “The depression is [not] so deep that I’m going to injure myself … it always comes back to a place where I go, ‘Well, there’s more to celebrate in my life than there is to mourn.’ The pain speaks for itself. You either tolerate it or you don’t. And I’m not going anywhere.”
Watch the trailer for Fox’s documentary below (or click here):
I don’t know about you, but I can’t help but be inspired by Michael J. Fox’s bravery in the face of such difficulty. He truly is a celebrity to admire.
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