Mariska Hargitay has a lot to celebrate in the coming weeks!

January 23 will mark the 60th birthday of the Law & Order: Special Victims Unit star, and in a recent interview with People, she revealed that she is embracing getting older with grace.

“I’m so excited. I announce it constantly. I’m proud of it. I’m stronger than I’ve ever been,” she told the outlet.

She also talked about how her role on SVU has kept her going strong. “The age thing was never something I was scared of. I didn’t get cast until I was 35, and then the show kept going as I aged. At 45, we’d been on for ten years and I just met my husband. The man of my dreams. I got married at 40. I had August at 42. So it was like defying all the odds.”

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She continued: “I won an Emmy and all these major things kept happening. I didn’t take anything for granted. My beautiful children. And then in my 50s, my foundation is on fire, and I’m on a show that matters, and I’m counting my lucky stars. How did I get here? And why does nobody care how old I am?”

Happy almost birthday, Mariska!

Mariska Hargitay talks about The Joyful Heart Foundation

In a 2022 interview with Access, Hargitay revealed why she decided to fond The Joyful Heart Foundation, and organization that helps support survivors of abuse.

“When I started SVU, very quickly, I started to receive a different kind of fan letter. Instead of, you know, ‘I love your show, you’re a great actress,’ it was women and men disclosing stories of abuse. People started sharing and saying, ‘Your show changed my life,’ and ‘I’ve never told anyone [about my abuse].’ That is the sentence I heard most: ‘I’ve never told anyone.’”

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She continued: “There’s nothing about this to keep secret. This is something we should all be talking about. “I knew very early that this wasn’t a regular TV show. I understood very quickly the power of healing this television show had.”

“Since 2004, Joyful Heart has been a leading national organization with a mission to transform society’s response to sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse, support survivors’ healing, and end this violence forever,” the organization’s mission statement reads.

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Kay Adams