The Surprising Way Valerie Harper Plans to Celebrate Her 75th Birthday

"Let's see if I make it ... I'm going to do my damnedest to," Harper said.

May 13, 2014 — -- Valerie Harper is now a year and four months removed from her terminal cancer diagnosis, having surpassed all expectations, the actress said she is now "just counting every day, one day at a time."

The "Rhoda" actress, 74, was given just 3 to 6 months to live and has publicly beaten the odds.

Harper was surgically cured of lung cancer in 2009, but "this little sneaky devil" as she calls it went up to the lining of her brain.

Though she's not cancer free, her doctors are amazing at how she is responding to treatments and Harper said she is now excited about the possibility of making it to her 75th birthday on August 22.

Read: Why Valerie Harper Did 'Dancing With the Stars': 'Don't Die Until You're Dead'

Last year, she told ABC she was excited to plan for the holidays with her husband Tony Cacciotti.

"And now, onward we go, here comes the birthday," she said of her August milestone. "I'm going to be three-quarters of a century old. I'm going to be 75 in August, so let's see if I make it. If I don't, I wasn't meant to, but I'm going to do my damnedest to stay!"

"Stay here, live it out, fight it through," she said of her outlook on life. "Try to hang in, that's my feeling about it."

In fact, Cacciotti mentioned taking Harper to Italy for her birthday. She wouldn't have it.

Watch: Valerie Harper Shares Secrets of Surviving Cancer

"We are in our 70's and we've had a fabulous life," she said. "I love sitting at home. I love laying in bed, watching television ... I don't have specific plans, except to see people I love and I'm very big with my garden. I haven't been gardening, but now I'm getting stronger. I might be out there with the geraniums, they are great!"

Harper spoke to ABC on behalf of Lung Force, sponsored by CVS, a "brand new, wonderful initiative" to bring awareness that "lung cancer is the No. 1 cancer killer of women," Harper said.

Harper said lung cancer is dangerous because it's discovered late, usually, and there needs to be more funding, something she spoke to the senate about last week and that Lung Force is trying to rectify.

Harper said Christina, "my gorgeous daughter," along with her husband and the rest of the family were ecstatic about another Mother's Day recently.

"It was wonderful to have the holiday," she added. "Now I am looking forward to Christmas, but let's not get too crazy, first I have the birthday."