Avril Lavigne is back with new album 'Head Above Water' after bouncing back from battle with Lyme disease
Lavigne wrote a lengthy letter to her fans on her website, detailing her battle with Lyme disease and how her new album is influenced by it.
Next Wednesday, on September 19, Avril Lavigne will release 'Head Above Water', the title track from her upcoming new album of the same name. The album will mark the pop-punk icon's sixth studio effort and comes a full half a decade after her previous eponymous release 'Avril Lavigne'.
It's also the first original material the singer will be putting out since she announced in 2015 that she was diagnosed with Lyme disease. Although Lavigne stayed out of the public spotlight, she confirmed that she has been toiling away at her album since then.
"I spent the last few years at home sick fighting Lyme Disease," she writes in a lengthy statement on her official website.
"Those were the worst years of my life as I went through both physical and emotional battles. I was able to turn that fight into music I'm really proud of... Truly... by keeping my spirits up, having goals to reach and a purpose to live for, my music helped to heal me and keep me alive..."
Lavigne goes on to thank her fans for being patient and reveals she wrote the lead single when she was convinced she was going to succumb to her illness.
"It is also the first song I wrote from my bed during one of the scariest moments of my life," she adds.
"I had accepted death and could feel my body shutting down. I felt like I was drowning. Like I was going underwater and I just needed to come up for air... Praying to God for Him to help me just keep my head above the water... I grew closer to Him. My mother held me. In her arms, I wrote the first song that I am releasing to tell my story..."
The 33-year-old also reveals she is ready to be "truthful" about her health struggle because she wants to raise awareness for other people who are battling the disease through the work of her charity, The Avril Lavigne Foundation.
"I'm taking my life back into my own hands and doing what it is I know I am meant to be doing in this lifetime," she continues.
"Making music. And sharing my healing and hope, through my music. I wish for this all to touch you, to bring you strength, to lift you up, to inspire and to encourage you..."
Lavigne's comeback story has already struck a deep cord with Shania Twain. As CTV News points out, the country superstar has battled the effects of Lyme Disease for years, and she paid tribute to Lavigne at the Country Music Association Awards on Sunday.
"It's a battle," Twain said on the red carpet for the event. "I'm inspired that she's going out there and carrying on, and not letting it get in her way."
While Twain says she's never spoken to Lavigne about her experiences, she would like to someday. "We all have obstacles in her life, I'm not letting Lyme's effects stop me," Twain said. "I'm happy to see that she's not letting it stop her either."
Similar powerful words of support are going to follow soon, both from other artists as well as Lavigne's longtime fan-army. Meanwhile, we'll have to wait till September 19 to get the first taste from the singer's new album, one that she wrote with a resigned acceptance of her uncertain fate.