Tionne 'T-Boz' Watkins refuses to dwell on the health battles which have blighted her life, insisting "everything happens for a reason."
The TLC singer has been "in and out of hospitals" since she was diagnosed with sickle-cell anaemia as a child.
She underwent surgery in 2007 after doctors discovered a non-cancerous tumour on her brain and just two years later (09), she was hit with a severe case of swine flu.
Watkins battled back from the life-threatening H1N1 virus, and she remains philosophical about coping with her illnesses - as surviving her brain tumour was such a tough battle.
She tells CNN, "I've been through a lot with sickle-cell, but my recovery from the brain tumour was the hardest thing. I'm proud of myself for seeing this through and to be here for my daughter. You have to make a commitment to yourself and that was important to me.
"I don't believe in changing anything because I think everything happens for a reason. If I didn't have bad things happen, I wouldn't know the good things. I'm wiser now.
"With age comes wisdom and I'm looking forward to becoming wiser. I'm not one of those people who is ashamed to say how old I am - I'm 41 - because other people told me I wasn't even supposed to be alive at this age. It made me who I am and I'm happy with me and I'm just glad I learned from my mistakes."