In an emotional Instagram post on Monday (March 1), Solange Knowles revealed that she was “fighting for my life” during the recording of her 2019 When I Get Home album.
On the two-year anniversary of the release of the project she said “literally changed my life,” the singer wrote, “When I first started creating ‘When I Get Home’ I was quite literally fighting for my life…in and out of hospitals (s/out park plaza on Binz! with depleting health and broken spirits asking God to send me a sign I would not only survive, but that if he let me make it out alive, I would step into the light whatever that meant.”
Solange didn’t elaborate on the health issues that she alluded to in the post, but added that during that time she felt God was speaking to her and that “half the time,” she didn’t know where it was coming from. “I only knew I had to open the door and honor it. … I didn’t know who I was speaking to on ‘I am a witness,’” she shared. “When I listen back, I hear a woman who had only an inkling of what the journey entailed, but didn’t have a clue of why or what the journey would look like. This project has shown me, once you open that door, you can’t go backwards. Believe me I’ve tried saying ‘nah I’m just playing’ so many times, ha. I’m not a big fan of talking about s–t I don’t know yet. I didn’t do much talking during this time because of that.”
Saying she’s “really down” for showing the process of making her art and hanging back when it hasn’t all been revealed, Solange said she makes her work to answer the questions she has for herself, as well as for survival. “Sometimes I am asking myself that same question many ways,” the artist added. “Sometimes it takes me years. I have to honor that time. This Houston ting moves slow y’all. One day, I’ll tell y’all about the days I’ve had since I opened this door. The things I’ve uncovered. The life long healing I’ve begin. The great divine joy and love I’ve experienced. The stories of my past I’ve survived that I had stored all up in my body…. till it said…. no more. The re-learning. The reckoning. This album led me to all of it. Life has now become before WIGH and after WIGH. I’m so grateful for you guys allowing me the space and time. So so so grateful. Ima be celebrating all week long the coming of home.”
A spokesperson for Solange could not be reached for comment on what illness the singer was referring to in her post. Solange said she plans to celebrate the anniversary of WIGH all week, with the party kicking off on Tuesday with the Criterion Channel’s release of a remastered director’s cut of Knowles’ art film for the album. The soiree will continue on her Black Planet site, which is hosting a series of letters from fans talking about what the album has meant to them as well as a video outtakes from the project.