Loretta Lynn Says Music Kept Her Focused on Recovering From Her Stroke, Broken Hip
The past year and a half have thrown plenty at Loretta Lynn -- but the 86-year-old country music legend won't be held down. In a new interview, the iconic artist details her recovery, which most recently included the release of some long-awaited new music.
After suffering a stroke in May of 2017, Lynn was well on her way down the road to recovery when she suffered a fall at her home on New Year's Day of 2018 that resulted in a broken hip. The resilient artist says that neither setback is enough to sideline her from the career she loves, though.
“I think people thought I wouldn’t come back from that,” Lynn tells People. “And they’re really shocked when I tell them, ‘Well, I’m doing good, I’m moving my arms, I’m moving all my parts, and I can still sing.’”
Lynn says the thought of giving up her music was a compelling reason for her to fight for a complete recovery. She admits that, when she realized that she was having a stroke, she worried, "I wondered if I could sing."
"Mommy said I was born singin’. That’s all I’ve ever done. I couldn’t believe that that could be taken away," Lynn admits. Fortunately, her voice was not affected by the stroke, but she temporarily lost the use of the left side of her body.
Of her recovery, Lynn admits, “Your mind tells you, ‘You can!’ but your body soon tells you, ‘No you can’t quite do this.'" Lynn began physical therapy immediately following her stroke and surprised even her caregivers with her determination to heal. “Got to work at it,” Lynn says of her resolution to recover fully. “I always had a different mindset — that I can do this. Just keep it up.”
Lynn's new album, Wouldn't It Be Great, dropped on Sept. 28. She'd postponed the project's release following her stroke, so that she could recover well enough to support the album. Now, Lynn says that plans to schedule a few tour dates to promote the record, noting that it's part of the recovery process for her.
“I will get completely better if I go out and hit the stage a couple times. I need to show everybody that I can do it," the artist shares. “I don’t have nothing to prove, but I have stuff I want to do ... and my fans want me to do it too.
"As long as you dwell on the bad," she adds, "it’s taking the life away from you that you need to be living.”
Loretta Lynn Through the Years