After given only three to six months to live last January when she was diagnosed with a rare cancer of the brain lining, Valerie Harper happily said goodbye to 2013 and joyfully welcomed a new year.
“Valerie Harper here,” the “Rhoda” star wrote on her Twitter account Dec. 31. “AND I am so grateful to be here, to be able to wish each and every one of you – Happy New Year! Have a wonderful 2014!!”
The actress, who underwent chemotherapy to slow the cancer’s progression, surprised many last September when she became a contestant on “Dancing with the Stars.”
The show is known to be physically taxing, but Harper said at the time that the experience “was an opportunity for me to carry a message to folks. Not just with cancer…but with whatever challenge.”
Though Harper didn’t win the coveted mirror ball trophy, she exclusively shared with Closer at the end of October some remarkable news about her recovery.
“[My doctor] said, ‘At the rate we are going, you don’t have to worry,’” she told Closer at the time. “‘You will see Christmas!’”
And though seemingly impossible a year ago, Harper has indeed celebrated another Christmas and another New Year’s, and continues to think positively about the future.
“We are all terminal and it’s great to face that — and then discard it,” she says. “Don’t live in fear of dying.”