Zsa Zsa Gabor turned 95 years old Monday, defying the grim expectations that have developed after a string of health scares over the past year.
Numerous times in the last 12 months, Gabor has been rushed to the hospital, causing the public to fear the worst but ultimately beating the odds and amazing the world with her remarkable resiliency.
The actress began 2011 in a bad way, arriving at the hospital with an infected lesion that would ultimately lead to the amputation of three-quarters of her right leg.
Several more hospitalizations followed. The death of film legend Elizabeth Taylor in May caused Gabor's blood pressure to spike out of fear that she would be next. In November, she was yet again hospitalized when her feeding tube became infected and began leaking stomach fluids.
Despite all of that, Gabor will be celebrating her birthday in a big way Monday night. The actress' publicist told TheWrap that there will be a celebration at the estate of Gabor and her husband, Prince Frederic von Anhalt. The bash, which is expected to draw more than 100 guests - Steve Allen among them - will be marked by performances by teenage "Falling Over You" singer Caleb, who's written an original birthday song for Gabor, and pianist Rei Williams.
If Gabor's health problems are weighing on her mind today, the invitation to the soiree doesn't show it.
"Well it's time to come clean and tell the truth, I can't hide it any more, For the first time I'll be celebrating my real birthday candle count," the invitation reads. "Over the years I may have overlooked a year or two (or 20), but not this year."
As the invitation also notes, Gabor has no intention of going away anytime soon.
"I love you and I hope to see you, but if you can't make it don't worry, I'm planning on celebrating more birthdays over the coming years with my true candle count, going all the way back to Woodrow Wilson's presidency, one of the few White House residents I never met."
Given all that she's been through in recent years, it's forgivable to wonder how Zsa Zsa Gabor is even alive at all, let alone celebrating. But as she marks another year on this planet, it's probably just best to be glad that she is, and to wish her the best on her big day.
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