Valerie Harper: Good News From Doctors

Kimberly RipleyLife

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Valerie Harper was pretty much given a death sentence when she was diagnosed with brain cancer a little more than a year ago. She was told at the time that at best she had just months to live. The Rhoda and Mary Tyler Moore Show star grabbed life by the horns and was determined to live whatever she had left of it to the very fullest.

That's exactly what Harper did, and now, even though her doctor is hesitant to say she is in remission, they are rather astonished by what they are seeing.

"My last scans have been positive, and my doctors are very happy," Valerie Harper said during a recent interview. "[The oncologist] looked at the scans and said, 'Oh my God, Valerie, this is very encouraging.'"

So what does her doctor say if he won't claim she's in remission?

"He likes to say, 'I give you a treatment, and it's either responsive or nonresponsive, and you are having a phenomenal response," she explains

This doesn't in any way mean she's been cured of her cancer.

"In response to a recent erroneous quote concerning my health, I am not 'absolutely cancer-free,' " she said in a statement on Wednesday. "I wish I were. Right now what I am is cautiously optimistic about my present condition and I have hope for the future."

A report published in Closer Weekly claimed the actress was cancer free. Excited fans started tweeting the happy news.

Harper was quick to squelch the inaccurate report, but happy to clarify that even if she wasn't deemed cancer free, she's certainly doing much better than doctors ever predicted.

"My cancer is incurable and terminal, but guess what? Not today!" Harper told PEOPLE on Wednesday. "There is all manner of suffering in the world, not all of it by any stretch related just to cancer or to illness, but all kinds of suffering."

She even offered a bit of advice for those who have perhaps been given a 'death sentence' similar to the one she was given--more than a year ago.

"Don't go to the funeral before it is time. So my time is looking good today and that's how we are all supposed to live our lives – one day at a time," she says.

Valerie Harper inspired fans when she appeared on Dancing With the Stars following her initial diagnosis.

She will soon appear on The Hallmark Channel in Signed, Sealed, Delivered.

Cancer free? Maybe not. But Valerie Harper is living one heck of a life just the same. Her amazing outlook sets a wonderful example for all.

Image via YouTube

Kimberly Ripley
Kimberly Ripley is a freelance writer and published author from Portsmouth, New Hampshire. A wife, mom of five and 'Nana' to Lilly and Aiden, she loves cooking for her big family and watching HGTV in her spare time. Kim is guilty of starting way more home design projects than she can finish. Visit her at Twitter and Facebook.