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Celine Dion Reveals Why She Shared Rare Diagnosis: 'Burden Was Too Much'

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Céline Dion is opening up even more about her stiff person syndrome, including her decision to reveal her diagnosis publicly, saying that lying about it and keeping it hidden felt like a "burden."

The "All By Myself" singer is set to appear in a segment on the Today show on Tuesday (June 11), where she speaks more about her diagnosis with the rare stiff person syndrome, per People. In a teaser for the interview, released on Monday, the iconic vocalist told co-host Hoda Kotb that she originally kept her diagnosis private because "we did not know what was going on."

"I did not take the time I should have stopped, take the time to figure it out," she said, adding that she was fearful of "feeling my body leaving me" and "holding on to my own dreams."

Dion first began experiencing symptoms in 2008, but didn't reveal her diagnosis until 2022 when she announced she was postponing several performances. According to Johns Hopkins Medical, stiff person syndrome is a rare autoimmune neurological disorder that can cause severe and painful muscle spasms and stiffness. She added to Kotb that she also noticed symptoms while supporting her late husband René Angélil as he underwent treatment for cancer. Angélil passed away in 2016.

"My husband as well was fighting for his own life," she said. "I had to raise my kids, I had to hide. I had to try to be a hero."

After years of keeping her health struggles out of the spotlight, she realized the "burden" of keeping it a secret was too much for her to bear.

"I could not do this anymore," she said. "Lying for me, the burden was too much. Lying to the people who got me where I am today, I could not do it anymore."

Since making her diagnosis public, Dion has received overwhelming love and support, including during a surprise appearance at the 2024 Grammy Awards earlier this year.