A life full of fame and fortune might seem pretty enviable—but that’s likely (at least partially) because you’re not seeing the full picture of what the constant spotlight is like. Underneath all the glitz and glam of stardom, things aren’t as perfect as they appear, and one celebrity in particular isn’t afraid to admit it.
Solely by watching Lady Gaga‘s electric performances onstage, you’d never know anything was amiss beneath the surface of her strong voice. But the musician has never been afraid to open up to her fans and has candidly talked about her struggles with depression and anxiety in the past. In her upcoming Netflix documentary, Gaga: Five Foot Two (out September 22), she’s letting the world in on her battle against chronic pain.
“There’s an element and a very strong piece of me that believes pain is a microphone,” she said at a Toronto Film Festival press conference. “My pain does me no good unless I transform it into something that is. I hope that people watching it that struggle with chronic pain know they are not alone.”
Even the documentary’s director Chris Moukarbel touched on the topic, saying, “It was incredibly hard, on a basic fundamental human level, to be near someone experiencing pain like that. There’s nothing you can do, beyond filming. I felt I needed to continue to roll. She was very aware of people struggling with similar chronic pain. She’s not even sure how to deal with it.”
“My pain does me no good unless I transform it into something that is. I hope that people watching it that struggle with chronic pain know they are not alone.”
Because of her chronic pain, Gaga plans to take some much-needed time off from music to heal her body: “I’m going to take a rest. It doesn’t mean I won’t be creating. It doesn’t mean I don’t have some things up my sleeve,” she said at the festival.
Mother Monster is proving that shedding the “perfect” celebrity image in favor of openness and honesty is a positive choice that fans not only can handle but also revere an support. Plus, with the support of all her Little Monsters, she’ll no doubt have much more willpower to show chronic pain who’s boss.