Christina Applegate, of “Anchorman” fame, celebrated her 50th birthday Friday in Los Angeles, with the help of two special guests: her son and her House of Blues boyfriend.
Applegate, who has multiple sclerosis, “is so grateful for all of the love and support she’s received,” she said in a statement from her publicist.
Applegate became a cancer survivor at 38 and a mother at 41, after giving birth to her first child, 2-year-old Sadie. She says she was told by doctors that she’d never have another baby because of her “very unfortunate” family history.
“As anybody with MS can tell you, I was supposed to die,” she told Rolling Stone last year. “That’s what they told my parents.”
Applegate, who turned 50 on July 20, has been actively using MS.org to keep fans up to date with how her condition has affected her and how the disease has shaped her life.
MS is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain and between the brain and body. In the United States, an estimated one in every 88 people, or one in 400 people between the ages of 15 and 44, have MS. It can affect any part of the nervous system, including the optic nerves, the spine, and the cerebellum, and can range from mildly disabling to disabling.
As a child, Applegate’s mom found herself vomiting at the supermarket. She lost the ability to walk and to recognize faces, and was told she had breast cancer twice. Her parents were thrilled when she gave birth to Sadie, because they hoped it was cancer.
“My mom is so grateful because I always tell her, you know, ‘Wow, that was unbelievable. I lost my mom to cancer, and I had an amazing son,'” Applegate said to Rolling Stone. “I had a great husband. And we’re here. We’re good.”
Applegate is now cancer-free and nearly 7 years post-surgery.
“The disease may be gone from my body, but it still finds me and it’s always going to find me,” she said on MS.org. “But I’m going to fight harder than ever to live a really happy and healthy life.”
There is no cure for MS.
“My family life and my love life are two of the best parts of my life,” Applegate said on MS.org. “I want to be a great mother to my son, and I want to be a great wife and a great friend to my boyfriend, Trevor. I want them to be able to travel and know that I’ll always be there.”