Demi Lovato Reflects on Her Emotional Return to the Stage After 2018 Overdose

In an interview airing before the release of her YouTube documentary, Demi Lovato recalls what she was thinking during her stage comeback that followed her near-fatal 2018 overdose.

By Corinne Heller Mar 21, 2021 9:10 PMTags
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In 2020, Demi Lovato gave a haunting and emotional performance at the Grammys, making her return to the stage for the first time in almost two years since she suffered a near-fatal overdose.

In an interview with CBS Sunday Morning, airing two days before the premiere of her YouTube documentary Demi Lovato: Dancing With the Devil, the 28-year-old pop star details what was running through her mind during that onstage comeback, during which she sang her new ballad "Anyone."

"I didn't know if I'd ever step foot on a stage again," she recalled. "When I woke up in the hospital, I was like, I don't know the full extent of the damage that's been done. I hadn't tried singing yet."

In July 2018, the "Sorry Not Sorry" singer was hospitalized after overdosing on drugs at her Hollywood Hills home, which came months after relapsing. Lovato, who battled substance addiction in years past, spent almost two weeks in a hospital before undergoing treatment at a rehab center and sober living facility.

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In her upcoming YouTube documentary, Lovato reveals that following her overdose, she suffered three strokes and a heart attack and doctors told her she would have had had about five to 10 minutes to live had no one called 911.

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"If no one had found me, then I wouldn't be here," she said on CBS Sunday Morning. "I'm grateful that I'm sitting here today, yeah."

She also said on the program, "For the first time in my life, [I] had to essentially die to wake up."

Nowadays, Lovato is continuing her recovery in a way that works best for her: In the documentary, she reveals that she's not abstaining from all substances, but instead smokes weed—legal in California, where she lives—and drinks alcohol "in moderation."

"I think that the term that I best identify with is 'California Sober,'" Lovato said on CBS This Morning. "I really don't feel comfortable explaining the perimeters of my recovery with people because I don't want anyone to look at my perimeters of safety and think that's what works for them because it might not."

She continued, "I am cautious to say that, just like I feel the complete abstinent method isn't like a one-size-fits-all solution for everybody. I don't think that this journey of moderation is a one-size-fits-all solution for everybody, too."

Part 1 of the four-part documentary Demi Lovato: Dancing With the Devil, directed by Michael D. Ratner, will premiere on YouTube on Tuesday, March 23.