Grammy Award-winning singer Kelly Rowland is speaking candidly about her journey to reconnecting with her estranged father, Christopher Lovett, after more than 30 years and what piece of advice big brother Jay-Z gave her.
Rowland served as guest host on the Tuesday, March 15, episode of “Today,” where she appeared alongside Hoda Kotb. The “Motivation” singer revealed that Brooklyn native gave her a critical piece of advice before meeting her father in 2018 after three decades without speaking to each other.
“He said, ‘Love is all about risk. You gotta decide if you’re gonna jump,’” the 41-year-old recalled. “‘You gonna jump?’ That’s what he asked me: ‘Are you gonna jump?’”
In the interview, the Georgia-born entertainer revealed what led to her and her father not speaking, noting that her single mother raised her after Lovett felt unfit for parenthood. The “Coffee” singer shared that she’s always felt like there was something “missing” from her life since then.
“I had a wonderful mom who supported me and loved me, but the truth is, there was always a piece of me that was kinda missing,” the actress continued. “For 30 years, my dad was absent in my life.” Following the birth of her first son Titan and her mother’s death in 2014, the former Destiny Child star reached out.
The two ultimately met at a hotel in Atlanta, where Rowland revealed she listened to her father speak for two hours. “I learned that we are not perfect, and it broke my heart to know that there is going to be something about me that my kids is going to be disappointed about,” she said tearfully. “Something, you don’t do it intentionally, of course. You have to allow space. You’re not going to get it right every time, and that’s OK.”
The star added, “I had to give my dad grace. As parents, we have to give our parents grace. It’s never too late. Forgiveness is always right there.” Lovett was also present during the discussion. The father said reuniting with his daughter was “like a dream.”
Rowland said it was imperative “to the little girl in me” that her father say that he loved her. She added, “It was necessary to hear it from a man. It was necessary to hear it from my father. When I thought about all the tumultuous relationships and trying to figure out men, like, that is the base and the foundation of it psychologically. So when I’m talking to therapists, and I’m asking them about this, it all runs back to the abandonment issue.”