Emma Caulfield, best known for playing Anya on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, has revealed she is battling multiple sclerosis.
Caulfield went public with the diagnosis in an interview with Vanity Fair.
“Once upon a time, I had zero health problems,” Caulfield told the outlet.
“Back in 2010, I was working on [executive producer] Marti Noxon’s Gigantic, and prior to starting that job, I woke up one morning and the left side of my face felt like there were a million ants crawling on it.”
“I went to my acupuncturist, and he was like, ‘I don’t know, man. Maybe you have Bell’s palsy?’”
Caulfield went through an MRI after visiting a neurologist and received news of her diagnosis when she returned to work.
“I had five minutes down or whatever. And he was like: ‘You have MS.’ Just like that,” the star recalled.
”I’m like, ‘No, that’s not possible.’ I’m like, ‘What are you talking about?’ [The doctor] was very matter of fact about it…. It was literally a kind of nightmare.”
“It was like an out-of-body experience.”
“It turns out it was something major. Then I was like, ‘I’ve got to go to work now.’ What do I do?”
“Truthfully, my attitude is not crumbling under the fear of ‘what if’ or ‘what can,’ or ‘what has’ for other people. I just have to keep going.”
The actress said she kept her condition to herself all these years because she “didn’t want to give anyone the opportunity to not hire me.”
“There are already plenty of reasons to not hire people, reasons most actors don’t even know. ‘You look like my ex-girlfriend… You’re too short. You’re too tall. You look mean. You look too nice. You don’t have the right color eyes.’ I knew in my bones that if you talk about this, you’re just going to stop working. That’s it.”
Caulfield revealed that she will be reprising her role from WandaVision in the spinoff series Agatha: Coven of Chaos.
“I am going back to work!” she said.
“Everyone has been notified that needs to be notified. I can’t put myself through what I did with WandaVision again. I can’t do that. They did nothing wrong…. They had no idea what was going on with me.”
“They didn’t ask anything of me that was like, ‘I need to call my agent!’ They’re asking me to just sit and chat and do my dialogue. It’s not hard.”
“[I told them now] knowing that I shouldn’t be out in this [Atlanta] heat at all. And if I am, I need to be taking way more precautions than I am.”
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.