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Ariana Grande Says She Felt ‘Deeply Misunderstood’ While Reflecting on Past Year

Ariana Grande Reflects on Her Most Challenging and Happiest Year of Her Life
Ariana GrandeDAMEBK/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

Ariana Grande can’t help but look back on how much her life has changed in 2023.

“One of the most transformative, most challenging and yet happiest and most special years of my life. There were so many beautiful yet polarizing feelings,’ the pop star, 30, wrote via a lengthy Instagram Story on Friday, December 29. “I’ve never felt more at the mercy of and in acceptance of what life was screaming to teach me.”

Grande has had her fair share of ups and downs throughout this year. In July, Us Weekly confirmed that she and Dalton Gomez separated after two years of marriage. Two months later, Grande officially filed for divorce from Gomez, 28, and listed their date of separation as February 20, 2023.

Shortly after news broke about Grande’s breakup from Gomez, she moved on with her Wicked costar Ethan Slater. A few days later, Slater filed for divorce from his estranged wife, Lilly Jay, whom he wed in 2018 and shares one child, who was born in 2022. Jay slammed Grande at the time, telling Page Six, “[Ariana’s] the story, really. Not a girl’s girl. My family is just collateral damage.”

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“I have never felt more pride or joy or love while simultaneously feeling so deeply misunderstood by people who don’t know me, who piece whispers together and make what they want out of me and their assumptions of my life,” Grande reflected on Friday. “I have learned how much more important one of those things is than the other.”

Grande explained that she has “never felt more” protected by her friends, family and fans as she’s endured a lot over this year.

Ariana Grande Reflects on Her Most Challenging and Happiest Year of Her Life
Ariana Grande VALERIE MACON / AFP) (Photo by VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images

“I feel safe even amidst so many things I’d usually be afraid of. I am listening to and trusting myself, even when fear or trauma tells me not to,” she continued. “I am reacting to things that deserve my energy only and removing and protecting myself from things that do not.”

In addition to the whirlwind of emotions she endured in her personal life, Grande also expressed how “fulfilled” she felt in her career as well. Not only did she work on the film adaptation of Wicked, but she also has been working on new music, which she said would be dropping next year.

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“I am so eternally grateful do all the feelings I was lucky enough to feel so deeply this year. Mine and Galinda’s alike. The unfathomably hard ones and the inexplicably happy ones,” she penned. “I feel more human than ever. I feel more deeply than ever. I feel softer and stronger all at once.”

Grande concluded her message by wishing her followers a happy and healthy New Year. She also reminded them that if they felt “misunderstood or alone” that is not the case and the feelings “will pass.”

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