Demi Lovato is counting her blessings this holiday season.
"As many of you know, last year at this time, I was in treatment. I spent Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Eve away from my home and family which is why I am so excited to be with them this year," the 19-year-old singer writes in her monthly Seventeen column. "Thinking about how far I have come in a year makes me so thankful."
In late 2010, Lovato checked into a rehab facility to treat depression and bulimia. While there, the former Disney Channel star also discovered she suffers from Bipolar II disorder.
"I could not have done this without God and the amazing support from my family," Lovato says. "They have stuck by me through everything and love me just the way that I am. That is a wonderful feeling to know that people accept the real you."
Despite her hardships, the teen singer says she's "thankful for my life path, including the highs and the lows, because it has caused my true self to shine through."
"Going to treatment was a gift and I believe it saved my life. I learned how to be strong and healthy even through struggles," Lovato says. "It also helped me open up about my issues and share them with others. Knowing that my family, friends and fans accept me for who I am is the greatest feeling ever!"
Lovato — who is currently on tour to promote her third album, Unbreakable — says the experience taught her to stop taking "things for granted, like my family, friends, fans and career. Each day is special to me and I take each day one day at a time."
"Sometimes people get busy and forget to enjoy the moment, but I know I will not do that this holiday season," she adds. "I have worked very hard to get to the place I am today and I am going to enjoy every minute of it!"
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