Saturday 1 October 2016

Yolanda Foster reveals her model daughter Bella Hadid is also battling incurable lyme disease

Independent.ie Newsdesk and Agencies

Published 09/10/2015 | 08:44

Gigi and Bella Hadid
Gigi and Bella Hadid
(L-R) Gigi Hadid, Anwar Hadid, Yolanda Foster and Bella Hadid attend the Global Lyme Alliance "Uniting for a Lyme-Free World" Inaugural Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on October 8, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Global Lyme Alliance)
Yolanda Foster (L) and Bella Hadid attend the Global Lyme Alliance "Uniting for a Lyme-Free World" Inaugural Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on October 8, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Global Lyme Alliance)
Gigi Hadid (L) and Bella Hadid attend the 2015 CFDA Fashion Awards at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 1, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

Model Bella Hadid has been battling Lyme disease since 2012.

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The 19-year-old star's mother is Yolanda Foster, who has spoken out about suffering from the disease for many years. On Thursday, Yolanda was honoured at the Global Lyme Alliance Gala in New York City, and she used her speech to discuss how effected by the condition her family has really been.

"When my two youngest children, Bella and Anwar, were diagnosed with chronic Lyme disease in early 2012, watching my babies struggle in silence in order to support me in my journey, struck the deepest core of hopelessness inside of me," she said.

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Yolanda Foster (L) and Bella Hadid attend the Global Lyme Alliance
Yolanda Foster (L) and Bella Hadid attend the Global Lyme Alliance "Uniting for a Lyme-Free World" Inaugural Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on October 8, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Global Lyme Alliance)

Yolanda was given the Power of One award, and her family and friends turned out to show their support. Bella, Anwar and their model sister Gigi were all on hand to congratulate their mother, with Yolanda's husband David Foster, mother and Joe Jonas, who is dating Gigi, all there too. Gigi introduced her mother to the stage and used the opportunity to explain that although Yolanda features in TV series The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills there is a lot more to her than just being a reality show.

"I remember when she was going into the first season of filming, she said to me, 'I don't know why this show was brought to my life, but for some reason, I think it will lead to something bigger,'" Gigi explained. "She realised that she could use this platform of this world-famous television show to spread awareness. She was honest, unapologetic, and raw in how she portrayed Lyme disease on social media and on the show from the second she announced to the world she had been diagnosed."

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Yolanda used her speech to pay tribute to Bella and Anwar, saying that it was to stand as promise that she will do everything she can to ensure their lives aren't full of "suffering" because of their diagnosis. She vowed to find a cure so she can see her children growing up in a healthy way, leading lives which aren't blighted by pain, and admitted having the disease means she hasn't always been able to be the parent she would like.

(L-R) Gigi Hadid, Anwar Hadid, Yolanda Foster and Bella Hadid attend the Global Lyme Alliance
(L-R) Gigi Hadid, Anwar Hadid, Yolanda Foster and Bella Hadid attend the Global Lyme Alliance "Uniting for a Lyme-Free World" Inaugural Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on October 8, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Global Lyme Alliance)

"I am so sorry for all the important things I have missed in your life these past four years," she said. "I used to be a pretty cool, smart, multi-tasking, kickass mom. But all three of you, all three of my children really got short-changed with a dumb blonde in the white robe, that mostly lives her life in bed."

Gigi Hadid (L) and Bella Hadid attend the 2015 CFDA Fashion Awards at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 1, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Gigi Hadid (L) and Bella Hadid attend the 2015 CFDA Fashion Awards at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 1, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

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