Reaching out. Avril Lavigne opened up about providing support to Justin Bieber over their shared experience with Lyme disease.
“I hit him up and just let him know that I was there if he needed anything,” the Canadian singer, 35, told Us Weekly exclusively on Tuesday, May 5, while discussing “We Are Warriors,” her new charitable single. “He hit me back and was like, ‘Thanks,’ and stuff. I know he’s in a similar situation [to me] where he went through his Lyme disease, but he was just putting out a new album and about to also do a tour, and that all got canceled as well.”
The “I Don’t Care” crooner, 25, publicized his fight against Lyme disease — a tick-borne illness that can include symptoms such as swollen lymph nodes and fever — in January via Instagram. “It’s been a rough couple years but [I’m] getting the right treatment that will help treat this so far incurable disease and I will be back and better than ever,” he wrote.
In response to Bieber’s news, Lavigne showed her support for the fellow Canadian star. “Today @JustinBieber shared that he has Lyme disease. There are too many people that have this debilitating disease,” she shared via Instagram. “People I love and care about and many friends and fans I have crossed paths with. To everyone affected by Lyme, I want to tell you that there is HOPE.”
Lavigne has become a major Lyme disease advocate since announcing her secret battle in 2015. On Tuesday, she revealed to Us “the biggest thing” she learned from living with the condition.`
“I realized who in my life was really there for me,” she explained. “I have a small group of close friends around me and the people that are in my life are people who don’t do surface level. My relationships with people are very deep and lifelong friendships. My friends become my family. So I have a group of amazing people around me today.”
Lavigne has addressed her fight against the illness in her music, including “Warrior” from her 2019 album, Head Above Water. The Grammy nominee has since re-recorded and renamed “Warrior” to “We Are Warriors” to honor healthcare professionals working on the frontlines amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“I’m in such awe of all the frontline workers and everyone who’s really stepped up right now and they’re just, like, holding the world together,” she explained to Us. “They’re being referred to as warriors because they are the true warriors right now. So it made me think of my song ‘Warrior,’ and I was like, ‘I want to re-record this song and put together a powerful music video and send some good vibes and a good message out.’”
Lavigne continued, “I re-recorded it and changed some of the lyrics. The medical workers and frontline workers were on my heart while I was singing it, so this is dedicated to them to show and express my gratitude.”
Proceeds from Lavigne’s song “We Are Warriors” will benefit Project Hope, an organization providing personal protective equipment for medical workers globally, and the Avril Lavigne Foundation.
With reporting by Kayley Stumpe
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