Mary J. Blige is on the other side of an emotional mountain she was climbing, and these days her life isn’t so uphill.
In a new interview with People, the singer opened up about what life is like after she divorced her former manager Kendu Isaacs after 13 years of marriage.
Blige said Isaacs cheated during their union, and in 2017 a judge ordered her to pay him $30,000 in spousal support.
“I think I turned that corner when I got my divorce,” she explained. “I think that I realized that no matter what comes to me, no matter how big or bad it is, I have to keep moving, I have to keep living. I said, ‘No, I’m not going to stay in this marriage. I’m out of here.’ That’s what thriving is about.”
“I’m very content, and I’m happy with myself,” added Blige. “I learned to be happy with just Mary, just enjoying my own company, me by myself most of the time. I’m grateful.”
On Sunday, the 48-year-old received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the BET Awards, where she also rocked the crowd with a 20-minute medley that included guests Method Man and Lil’ Kim.
Some of the classics Blige sang included “My Life,” “You Remind Me,” and, of course, the single that started it all, “Real Love.”
She told People that singing those songs is a blessing, because although they’re about some painful times, they’re able to help others with their own challenges.
“To be able to touch people with what you’ve gone through and pull them though the sadness makes me happy almost. I can’t even describe it. It’s therapeutic,” she said. “To travel back and to relive something again and not have it drive you crazy is a true gift from God.”
Blige will be headlining the 2019 Essence Festival next month, and shortly afterward she’ll be on the road with Nas for two months on “The Royalty Tour.”
According to the social media talk, folks couldn’t be any more excited to see the two icons on stage, and Blige said she had no idea that her flaws would help her become a star.
“If I could tell my younger self something, I would tell her don’t be afraid of your imperfections, because one day people are going to love you for them,” she stated.
The New York native also touched on what she actually does to stay happy these days.
“I try to keep my mind positive, I stay working out, I try to eat right and treat people right,” she explained. “I have fun, too, don’t get it twisted. I go out with my friends, I laugh, I joke, I have wine. I do all of that.”