She writes of her new optimism and protecting her son from the pain of her breakup
It’s been over a year since country star Shania Twain, who split from her husband producer Robert “Mutt” Lange in May 2008 following his affair with her best friend, Marie-Anne Thiébaud, 38, a longtime secretary and manager of the couple’s chateau in Switzerland.
And she’s telling fans she’s doing just fine.
“[I’m] managing very well, in fact,” writes Twain in a letter to her fan club on her Web site. “I’m enjoying my child, friends and family like I haven’t in years, and it’s great . . . I’ve been experiencing and seeing new things every day, living life with a different and more optimistic attitude.”
The singer’s last public appearances included her triumphant return to the CMA Awards in November and a Manhattan shopping spree and a fun-filled Florida vacation in December with Thiebaud’s ex-husband, Frédéric Thiébaud, 39.
Since then, she’s been back at her home in Switzerland, writing songs and caring for her 7-year-old son with Lange, Eja D’Angelo.
“The personal issues that took place just over a year ago have been well documented, and there s no need to go into more detail here,” says Twain. “Since then, I’ve been inspired by my pain to write and use writing as a therapy through the suffering. I truly wouldn’t wish this on anybody as a means to get inspired, but it’s been a productive period with so much emotion trying to find it’s way out.”
Aside from healing through writing songs, the country star has been trying to keep it together for Eja.
“As many things as there have been to write about through this difficult time in my life, healing is serious business and has taken a lot of the wind out of my sails, slowing me down at times,” she says. “As you know, I am a mom and all my energy goes to making sure my little man is healthy and happy in every way. This is a full time job, as any parent understands, but especially difficult when you are battling your own personal crisis at the same time while trying to spare your child of being affected by your own suffering.”
Though she says that “during this intense period, I was managing to hide my devastation from Eja and cried only when I was alone,” she describes a day when she broke down in front of her son.
“One time when I was having a weak moment listening to some sad music and sobbing and slobbering over my computer s keyboard, Eja walked up behind me and asked me why I was crying,” she writes. “He wasn’t sad at first – just totally surprised to see his mom crying (he is seven and never saw me cry before), and didn’t know what to make of it.”
Her explanation? “I was quick on my feet to answer him though and told Eja that music was very powerful and can make people quite emotional,” says Twain. “It can make you want to dance, feel angry, happy or sad and that this song was sad and made me cry. He accepted this, hugged me and went back to what he was doing. Phew, that was tough!”
Twain reports that she’s settled into a daily routine with her son. “Each morning I put my son on the school bus, feed our two dogs Sony and Dolly, drink my orange juice and sit down at the computer to write,” she says.
“It often comes out in the form of poetry, diary notes or e-mails to friends,” says Twain of her songs. “I often go back to my e-mails for song ideas. When I write in letter form, I don’t hold back.”
Thanks to her new attitude on embracing life, she’s also been on enough exotic adventures over the past year to fill an Indiana Jones trilogy.
“I’ve jumped out of an airplane at 10,000 feet, I’m riding Spanish and Arabian horses, traveling to exotic places, I’ve been deep sea diving for the first time!” she writes. “I pull the odd all-nighter, read more books, listen to Eja’s favourite music with him, LOUD (ironically his favourite band is ACDC [sic]) and basically I’m enjoying life.”
Twain says, “The many blogs and e-mails have warmed my heart, strengthened my confidence, given me courage, and have often even made me laugh out loud in a good way! I know I am not alone and realize through your support that you are all [rooting] for Eja and I, and our well-being.”
“Time has a way of making everything right, and it is my hope that good music will eventually come out of it,” she says, asking fans to be patient with her and apologizing profusely for the delay in making her next album. “I say ‘good music’ since I don’t want to just throw anything at you, just for the sake of hurrying up to get it out.”
She signs off saying, “Till next time, my friends. Be well, and peace and happiness to all of you. Love, Shania.”
• Shania shocked by husband’s affair with close friend