Today is Demi Lovato‘s 26th birthday — and it’s not lost on family or friends that she almost didn’t reach it.
While the singer is in treatment after an apparent overdose on July 24 (reportedly on fentanyl-laced oxy), she will have limited contact with the outside world for several months, but that hasn’t stopped her nearest and dearest — and those devoted Lovatics — from marking the day. Using #HappyBirthdayDemi, they have been spreading love in posts, but perhaps none is as poignant as the one shared by Lovato’s little sister, Madison De La Garza, 16.
Along with a photo of a young Lovato holding her as a baby, De La Garza, of Desperate Housewives fame, thanked the “Sober” singer’s doctors for saving her sib’s life, noting, “Today could have been one of the worst days of my life, but instead i get to spend it thanking God, the incredible doctors, demi’s team, and everyone across the world who offered their support — without all of these people i wouldn’t have my big sister anymore.” She also shared a few words on what the real Lovato is like, revealing things like how Lovato brushes De La Garza’s hair behind her ear while she tries to fall asleep or how the superstar’s nostrils flare when she says certain words. “Because those are the things i’m thankful for today,” De La Garza wrote. “They seem so small, but those little things make up my sister — not a singer, not a celebrity, and definitely not what she’s been described as in the media — she’s a daughter, a friend, and my big sister … and i am so, so thankful that i can tell her happy birthday.”
today could have been one of the worst days of my life, but instead i get to spend it thanking God, the incredible doctors, demi's team, and everyone across the world who offered their support – without all of these people i wouldn't have my big sister anymore. i've been thinking about how i wish that everyone could see the silly little things that she does, like how her nostrils move when she says certain words and when she brushes my hair behind my ear when i'm trying to sleep, because those are the things i'm thankful for today. they seem so small, but those little things make up my sister – not a singer, not a celebrity, and definitely not what she's been described as in the media – she's a daughter, a friend, and my big sister… and i am so, so thankful that i can tell her happy birthday. #happybirthdaydemi ❤️
A post shared by Madison De La Garza (@maddelagarza) on Aug 20, 2018 at 10:34am PDT
This is especially moving because Lovato previously revealed that her sister had once served as a catalyst for her getting sober. In 2017, Lovato said during an interview on the Jonathan Ross Show, “One of the main reasons of getting sober was so that I could be around my little sister because my mom and dad [said I couldn’t be around her] if I was doing stuff.”
Their mother, Dianna De La Garza, reshared the post, writing that she is “blessed beyond relief today.”
A post shared by Dianna De La Garza (@diannadelagarza) on Aug 20, 2018 at 11:38am PDT
Many of Lovato’s fans have been posting birthday tributes as well. They’re just spreading love to the performer they stan — and urging her to stay strong and keep fighting.
I write this with tears in my eyes because today is your 26th birthday and you’re in rehab. I wish you could be at home celebrating with your friends and family but I’m actually glad you’re choosing to fight your demons. I love you so much 💗 #HappyBirthdayDemi pic.twitter.com/Mm0as5bfyt
— Demi Lovato News (@demetriaaalove) August 20, 2018
Happy 26th birthday to the most beautiful and strong woman who inspires me and millions every day. She went thought so many bad things, but she keeps fighting. Such an inspiration to all of us!#HappyBirthdayDemi pic.twitter.com/AaBAPolyAe
— AL (@archivelovato) August 20, 2018
to the person i grew up listening to & looked up to for years,
i wish you were here to read all these birthday messages but im glad you chose recovery and fight your battles & im always gonna admire you for that. cant wait to have you back. ily #HappyBirthdayDemi 🎂♥️ pic.twitter.com/CknjwBOLHb
— ᎪᎷᏞ✨ (@DemiLovatoGod) August 20, 2018
Happy birthday to the love of my life who has always been there for us. She is our warrior and we will always love and support her no matter what. Keep fighting, Demi. You can win this war. #HappyBirthdayDemi pic.twitter.com/4XaSbaD0NG
— Eminem (@demetrialovatxo) August 20, 2018
— Demi Lovato News (@ddlovatoffnews) August 20, 2018
Over the weekend, Lovato’s pal and backup dancer Dani Vitale took to social media to deny supplying the singer with drugs before her overdose. (“I have NEVER touched nor even SEEN a drug in my entire life,” Vitale wrote. “I DO NOT DO DRUGS, nor would I ever encourage, or supply them to anyone I love.”) She also talked about how the rumors stating she did affected her and prevented her from even leaving her house.
Lovato has been very candid about her struggles through the years with addiction, self-harm, and bipolar disorder. On July 24, just a few months after sharing in song that she was no longer “Sober,” she suffered an apparent overdose at her L.A. home after a night of partying. A report that surfaced last week stated she had freebased oxycodone on aluminum foil but didn’t realize the batch “appeared to be laced with fentanyl.”
She’s currently in a “several months”-long treatment plan to get her on track, including a stay in Chicago to work with a renowned addiction specialist. Her get-well plan includes limited contact with the outside world. According to E! News, Lovato “hasn’t been in communication with anyone,” including her ex Wilmer Valderrama, who had visited her multiple times at the hospital in L.A. She “is really focusing on herself” and “her health right now,” and her family is making sure they “eliminate all distractions.”
So while she might not be reading all those online birthday tributes, hopefully she is still feeling the love that so many people have for her — today and always.
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