The Bollywood star revealed she had been diagnosed with cancer last month.

Indian model-turned-actress Sonali Bendre has thanked her friends for being “pillars of strength” as she undergoes treatment for cancer.

The 43-year-old star shared a heartwarming post to Instagram to mark Friendship Day, which is celebrated on August 5 in India. The post featured two of her close friends, former Bollywood actress Gayatri Oberoi and interior designer Sussanne Khan.

“This is me,” Bendre started the post, revealing her bald head for the first time.

 

“And in this moment, I am really happy. People give me strange looks when I say that now, but it’s true and I’ll tell you why. I am now paying attention to every moment, looking for every opportunity to find joy and #SwitchOnTheSunshine.”

The actress continued: “Yes, there are moments of pain and low energy, but I am doing what I like, spending time with people I love, and feeling very loved and happy.

“I am extremely grateful to my friends, my pillars of strength, who at a moment’s notice, arrived to be with me and help me through this. In between their busy schedules they find time to visit, call, message, FaceTime… basically never leaving a moment for me to feel alone. Thank you for showing me what true friendship is.”

The star added that she now spends “far less time getting ready because I don’t have to fuss over my hair!”

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Bendre revealed last month she was battling “a high-grade cancer”, and undergoing treatment in New York.

“I’m taking this battle head on, knowing I have the strength of my family and friends behind me,” she said.

Her husband, filmmaker Goldie Behl, shared an update last week, revealing the star was “stable” and following treatment without any complications.

Bendre has also spoken about the challenge of telling her 13-year-old son, Ranveer, about her illness.

“As much as we wanted to protect him, we knew it was important to tell him the full facts,” she said in an Instagram post.

“We’ve always been open and honest with him and this time it wasn’t going to be different. He took the news so maturely… and instantly became a source of strength and positivity for me. In some situations now, he even reverses roles and takes on being the parent, reminding me of things I need to do!”

The actress has been using the hashtag #SwitchOnTheSunshine to document her cancer journey and her efforts to remain positive during this difficult time.

We’re wishing Sonali a speedy recovery.

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Images: Instagram