Shannen Doherty has been battling cancer for over a year, and while she has had her struggles, the Beverly Hills 90210 alum is showing the world that she still has a lot of fight in her.
Months after shaving her head, the 45-year-old actress took to Instagram on Saturday to show that her hair is finally growing back. The photo, which shows Doherty and her husband Kurt Iswarienko, was shared in honor of the #loveyourspousechallenge, which was “softly suggested” to her by actress and close friend, Sarah Michelle Gellar. Doherty, who was married to Kurt in 2011, called her husband her “soul mate” in the photo’s caption.
“It’s the 6th day of the #loveyourspousechallenge. This is us now,” Doherty wrote. “Life has handed us an interesting card with cancer and although we would both prefer to not be faced with such a terrible disease, we must also search for the good.”
It's the 6th day of the #loveyourspousechallenge This is us now. Life has handed us an interesting card with cancer and although we would both prefer to not be faced with such a terrible disease, we must also search for the good. Am I blessed? Yes. Blessed for my friends that I have. Blessed that I have a fantastic mom and blessed that this man is in my life. Cancer gives a clarity that is unique. I've seen friends run , I've seen strangers step up, I've seen the unwavering still unwaver and I've seen @kurtiswarienko there for it all. That's friendship. That's love.
Doherty wrote that she feels blessed despite being given the “cancer card.” And a big part of that is on account of Iswarienko’s unwavering support for her through her ongoing battle with breast cancer.
5th day of #loveyourspousechallenge Our honeymoon. @kurtiswarienko surprised me by taking me to South Africa. By far the best trip I've ever been on. It was enlightening, inspiring and life changing. Only kurt would understand me well enough to know that this was the perfect honeymoon trip. As I said before…. I'm lucky. I married my other half, my soul mate.
“Am I blessed? Yes. Blessed for my friends that I have. Blessed that I have a fantastic mom and blessed that this man is in my life,” Doherty added. “Cancer gives a clarity that is unique. I’ve seen friends run, I’ve seen strangers step up, I’ve seen the unwavering still unwaver and I’ve seen @kurtiswarienko there for it all.”
“That’s friendship,” she finished. “That’s love.”
Shannen confirmed to People that she was diagnosed with breast cancer in August 2015.
In July, Doherty revealed her shaved head after having an “impossibly tough day” battling cancer symptoms. The picture, where she is seen standing next to her mother Rosa Elizabeth Doherty and two friends, was shared on Instagram, where she thanked her followers by saying, “this is a squad.”
Unfortunately for the Charmed star, her cancer has spread to the lymph nodes and possibly outside of them as well, as revealed by her in an exclusive interview with Entertainment Tonight. To stymie the spread of the disease, Shannen said that she has to undergo chemotherapy and then radiation.
Doherty said that the pain and living without a breast are the least of her worries. The thing that scares her the most, she says, is the “unknown.”
“The unknown is always the scariest part. Is the chemo going to work? Is the radiation going to work? You know, am I going to have to go through this again, or am I going to get secondary cancer? Everything else is manageable. Pain is manageable, you know living without a breast is manageable, it’s the worry of your future and how your future is going to affect the people that you love.”
While Doherty is uncertain about what may happen to her in the future, she told ET earlier last month that having cancer has provided her with unintended blessings. The best part about it according to her is that her marriage, which she calls “always fantastic,” has become “even better” since her diagnosis.
“Cancer has in a strange way done some amazing things for me. It’s allowed me to be more me, like much more in touch with who I am, and much more vulnerable and the person that I always was, but I think it got hidden behind a lot of other stuff,” Shannen explained.
“I have the easy part,” Iswarienko added. “Just being a support system for her…I wish I could do it for her, you know?”
Shannen Doherty’s oncologist, Dr. Piro, said that her chemotherapy is almost finished.
“Shannen is doing amazing,” he said. “We have just a few more weeks of treatment, and then we’ll be nearly finished with the chemotherapy.”
We wish you the best, Shannen Doherty!
[Featured Image by Handout/Getty Images]