Jeff Bridges is opening up about a major milestone.

In a recent interview with The Independent, the 72-year-old actor discussed the health challenges he faced before he would walk his daughter, Hayley Roselouise Bridges, down the aisle at her wedding in August 2021.

Bridges had been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma in October 2020 and contracted COVID-19 in January 2021. He announced later last year that his cancer is in remission.

Before his daughter’s wedding, “The first goal was how long can I stand up,” he told The Independent.

According to the Oscar winner, he was only able to stand for 45 seconds at the time. He then worked with a trainer to increase the number of steps he could take and to stabilize his breathing while using oxygen assistance.

He expressed to the publication that working with a trainer every day only pushed him to work harder.

Bridges explained, “Finally, one day I said, ‘Maybe I can do it, you know.’ And it turns out I not only got to walk her down the aisle, but I got to do the wedding dance. That was terrific.”

His daughter Hayley married her longtime love, Justin Shane, in Kestrel Park in Santa Ynez, California.

She shared with Brides that Bridges gave a welcome speech that “touched on a trait of Justin’s that I also mentioned in my vows, which is that kids and dogs love him,” adding: “I believe this to be an example of his wonderful energy.”

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE’s free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

Bridges shared with PEOPLE in May 2022 that he spent almost five months in the hospital when his health struggles were at their worst.

“I had no defenses. That’s what chemo does — it strips you of all your immune system. I had nothing to fight it,” he said. “COVID made my cancer look like nothing.”

He said that he couldn’t roll over in bed without calling the nurse to help him with oxygen. “I was pretty close to dying. The doctors kept telling me, ‘Jeff, you’ve got to fight. You’re not fighting.’ I was in surrender mode. I was ready to go. I was dancing with my mortality,” he said.

By admin