Gloria Estefan has always been known for her strength. But it was the death of her mother that finally forced the eight-time Grammy winner to accept professional help.
After the passing of his mother, Gloria Fajardo, in 2017, Estefan found himself struggling emotionally. While she had gone through many traumatic things in her life, from a horrific 1990 bus accident to childhood sexual abuse, it was only after her mother’s death that she realized how important it was to deal with her mental health.
“I understood therapy and I knew its value. Despite the fact that I went through very difficult things in my life, I didn’t think I needed therapy at the time,” Estefan said in 2023. simmons leadership conference Tuesday in Boston. “I needed it after losing my mother.”
Estefan further stated that she has “really worked over the years” to find peace, and hopes to create a dialogue about working on one’s mental health – especially for young people.
“I think it’s so important nowadays, because I see a rise in anxiety among our youth, that we pay attention to our mental health because there’s a lot of information out there, a lot of negativity, a lot of difficult things. Gotta learn to tune it.” out,” she added.
In addition to therapy, Estefan credits a meditation practice (“It’s helpful for me, because it calms the voices we’re all constantly hearing”) and the ability to disconnect from the news when she becomes overwhelmed. Desire. “I focus on the things that fulfill me: my family, my grandson—he’s 10 years old and the light of my life and getting to spend time with him is the most incredible thing for me. So I hung up the phone, Estefan said.
In addition to her recent challenges, Estefan, who in January became the first Hispanic woman to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, said it was a 1990 bus accident that inspired her to rise above and find the strength within. With a severely broken back, doctors doubted she would ever walk again.
“Another millimeter and my placenta would have ruptured,” shared Estefan, who “had to mourn my body that was no longer there.” She sank into a deep depression when she realized that she could not even walk a step by herself.
Estefan, who gave herself about 10 days to cry, said, “I couldn’t turn, I couldn’t sit. I couldn’t be alone.” “And then I said, ‘You know what?
Every morning, Estefan tells herself to get out of bed, and focus on setting small goals on a daily basis.
“Today, I’m going to walk to the door. Then I’m going to go out to the hallway. Then I’ll walk outside my house, I’ll walk down the driveway or around,” she told herself. She spent the first three months floating in a pool because she couldn’t do anything else. Eventually, she was doing rehab six to seven hours a day, and was able to resume her music career. These days, she calls herself “titanium reinforced” because she has 8-inch rods attached to the sides of her spine.
After all, Estefan says it’s her family that keeps her grounded these days. But when it comes to keeping her head on straight, Estefan says that making sure her ego is in check is one of the most important lessons.
“Sometimes arrogance gets in the way of people climbing. Arrogance is a waste of time, ladies,” she said. “There’s really no room for that. But if we always come from a place of strength, kindness, openness and inclusion—that’s a better way to lead.”