It’s an understatement to say Selena Gomez has had a tough year, but she wouldn’t have it any other way.
The “Wolves” singer recently opened up about her hiatus and health emergency after undergoing an organ transplant this summer when her kidneys failed due to complications from lupus. As Billboard‘s newly crowned Woman of the Year, she told publication, “I don’t know how to explain the place that I’m in other than to say I just feel full.”
“It took me about five years and moments where I needed to step away and be alone and fight those fights on my own, or go away to a place where I could focus on that,” she said. “And that time for me was so painful and really hard and very lonely. But I really, really felt that that’s what helped me feel satisfied with where I am.”
Though she is grateful best friend Francia Raisa — who accompanied the star to Billboard‘s Women in Music 2017 ceremony in Los Angeles Thursday — volunteered to donate a kidney, the 25-year-old admitted it took her a while to embrace the scar that came from the life-saving surgery.
“It was really hard in the beginning. I remember looking at myself in the mirror completely naked and thinking about all the things that I used to b*tch about and just asking, ‘Why?'” she recalled. “When I look at my body now, I just see life. There are a million things I can do — lasers and creams and all that stuff — but I’m OK with it.”
The Disney Channel alum added the operation helped her focus on the important things in life, including her relationships with ex-boyfriend The Weeknd and on-and-off beau Justin Bieber.
“Something that I’m really proud of is that there’s such a true friendship [between me and The Weeknd]. I truly have never experienced anything like that in my life,” she revealed. “We ended it as best friends, and it was genuinely about encouraging and caring [for each other], and that was pretty remarkable for me.”
As for her current relationship, she explained her reconciliation with Bieber this way: “I cherish people who have really impacted my life. So maybe before, it could have been forcing something that wasn’t right.”