Jump forward Debbie GibsonInstagram and the 48-year-old pop star are providing energy, fun and spontaneity. But behind the job, the icon '80s is living with Lyme disease – bacterial illness that is mainly transmitted with ticks that create symptoms such as flu, joint pain / muscles, fatigue and weakness – for six years and he has made great changes to continue after his dreams. “It's a crazy call, wake it up,” she says Parade, between exchanging telephone calls from doctors. Since you are competing Dance with the Stars in 2017, Gibson continued to allow her to define the illness and 2019 is still one of the busiest years. Currently underway Mixtape tour supporting New Kids on the Block, the singer is working on new pop music, Christmas album, Christmas film and his new SiriusXM radio show, Mixtape Debbie Gibson, which will begin its new century, “Girls Out Night,” t Friday, June 7.
Related: Debbie Gibson on how her Lyme disease affects her Dance With The Stars Performances
We spoke to the singer about living with Lyme and the challenges of becoming a female pop star in the 80s.
How has your health since DWTS?
I still have periods of pain, neurology and food sensitivity, and then I have times when I can eat anything, I do late and my body is fine. It ebbs and flows.
What lifestyle changes have you made?
I have to be careful to manage stress and diet. Yesterday I was dealing with pain and fatigue and it was like me, “I don't feel better staying in bed. I have to do something fun, ” so I met the studio. That is the healing power – I slept better and I woke up better today. It's about what your energy gets in a great way against what you spend down. Then I invited dinner, which would be pushed too much. Spreading yourself is too thin, allowing your body to be taken down by these illnesses, so I accepted the things I can do and I can't do.
What impact does Lyme have on your professional / touring life?
I think I see the life of the town – one day at a time. I prepare the best I can, I can go out and put one foot in front of the other. My edges are wider, which means I had a smaller window that measured “fantastic” performance. Back in the day I was on Xanax or Prozac and it does that [it] look like [you always have everything together.] But we all wake up every day, either because of the weather or your relationship, and by bringing that to the stage, you are bringing people into a spot and will never see the same performance twice. I have accepted that and I learned that humanity is the most important thing you connect with an audience. I no longer see that you would expect to be perfect, the most healthy change.
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Why did you have an Xanax / Prozac and did you ever be given to you?
I wouldn't say I was compliant, but I was relying on that help for a while. I was a satisfaction in an adult world. It was so great that my body and my mind were chemically unequal, so I tried acupuncture, supplements and yoga — at 17 years of age. But I was too deep in the hole, so I sought therapy and I was placed on a medal basis for three years, under the care of the doctor. I can't take Xanax anymore – my whole rejects it. It is very ugly and is releasing when your old tricks stop working. For me, it was great because the globe pushed me in a corner and I evaluated my chassis. I know deeply about what I can and can't handle.
Record the positive things to build a better body image. List five things you like about your body. If you put your feelings into written words (the old fashioned way!) It helps you to process your ideas and remind you of things.
Can you talk to Shania Twain or Avril Lavigne about her experience with Lyme?
I met with Shania at DWTS and we talked about the need to relax every chance you get. A lot has been expressed by Avril and I, especially when I was strong and able to be in my big role. This illness makes you crazy. Not so many people around you get it because most of us look at the ordinary and we get on very well… but no one knows the feeling of feeling inside or what we did to overcome signs on any given day. I am so proud of Avril as he rides new music. She is clear and strong. It is such a personal journey and it takes great enthusiasm and hears your own answers.
You are also working on new music. Does your health affect you?
Lyme is an ongoing part of my life, but something moved and I started to feel better, looking forward and the music began to flow. I took a new studio and if I woke up at 4 o'clock to think, I'll lay it down. That is how I made my early democracy in our garage and I am back in this splendid, fun, spontaneous spirit. I love this new music, but I listen to tons of current music, so everything that is going on now affects it.
What prompted this change in your health?
I have been on a few-to-no medicines in recent years. My main type of treatment is kinesiology and chiropractic supplements. Currently, I have zero Lyme treatments – just vitamins for my overall health and homeopathic remedies. When you deal with a deep illness, eventually it is about catching a catch and not making too much cushion when you start feeling better. When I woke up feeling I am “normal,” I make a joke, “This is the day I get into trouble,” because I will do too much!
One of the Kids' on the Block!
This was great fun! I really had a minute of health, thinking about beds, “I need a week's rest” and Donnie [Wahlberg] called, “Can we take you on a plane on Thursday?” Of course, I got my button on a plane!
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You're celebrating the 30th anniversary Lost in your eyes. What was the hardest part of being a young, female singer back then?
Male executives were so disrespectful and I wanted to write and produce my music. It was a great battle to be young and female and only my “mother” was in her 30s, so she would sit at conference tables with men in a suit, saying that her hand was able to do this. her best was “Foolish Beat””- my first number.
What did these executives say?
Everyone wanted me to join older male producers / writers. I would say, “What does an older man know about being a teenager? That's what I sing with them! ”He was always fighting. Then when I was moving from a teenager to an adult, everyone wanted me to put up. I would like, “Let me move naturally!” Even if you have horrible years, that is to an audience. People in top sneakers do not have one day and assign them to the next. It is still difficult to be a woman in the business. Miley Cyrus is a great talent and it was a difficult time for people to accept the rock roll spirit because they wanted to keep it Hannah Montana. But if they didn't let her grow up, maybe they weren't growing up. There is a lot of psychology as a young girl in music, but it worked well for me.
Was it difficult to avoid alcohol, drugs, coping?
I have never been in parties nor did I hang with older people. I was there for music and there was nothing ever going for me.
What advice would you give to the struggling pop stars today, like Selena Gomez or Demi Lovato?
Young girls, whether in music or not, must cut themselves. Stop trying to be the version you love yourself – cosmetic, energetic, emotionally. Setting unrealistic expectations is what you get into trouble and especially with young women singers as you are expected to hit notes in a certain way. Look at Whitney Houston – when she was no longer able to hit these notes, I felt sad at her, as her self-worth was noticeable. Life is not always hitting with the bull.
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