Today I’m Starstruck for one Mr. Hugo Weaving.
Matrix star, elf in Lord of the Rings, and man behind the mask of V for Vendetta…has epilepsy. Diagnosed at 13 with this neurological disorder, he experienced a seizure about once a year.
There are so many “invisible” disabilities like epilepsy, fibromyalgia, learning disabilities, dyspraxia, etc. Just because you can’t see a person’s disability at first glance, doesn’t mean they can hide it from you indefinitely. As someone with an invisible disability, it’s a nice feeling to see shock in someone’s face when I tell them I have Crohn’s. Though I rarely get that response, either because they are worried for me, don’t know what it is, or because I’ve let them see my struggle.
I think some people with invisible disabilities feel the obligation to hide it from others. Let me tell you, it’s exhausting!
Hugo is a pretty cool person because his diagnosis is shocking and he doesn’t hide his epilepsy! It’s a rare combination.
He completely down plays his condition. I think he only gave one (brief!) interview about his condition and appears in the clip below.
Having a seizure out of the blue with no warning, repeatedly, is both traumatic and also enough to make anyone distrust their own body. It is a big deal. Even though he has not had a seizure in 18 years, I’m sure he is taking medication prevent them and these drugs come with many serious side effects.
Hugo was unable to get a driver’s license as a teen because of his epilepsy, but since he has been seizure-free for so long he can get it now. He say’s he’d prefer to walk. So it seems to me that Hugo doesn’t dismiss his epilepsy like he appears to afterall!
Hugo’s pretty awesome because–the way I read his interview–he get’s the last laugh over his epilepsy. This is what I imagine:
Epilepsy: Hahaha, you can’t drive!
Hugo: Oh good, I really didn’t want to drive anyway. I really dodged a bullet there; thanks Epilepsy!
Everyone has their own “driver’s licence” to bear… 😉 I hope you get the last laugh!