An uphill battle. Days after going public with her lung cancer diagnosis, Kathy Griffin is recovering from surgery while trying to maintain her sobriety.
“To be honest, this cancer surgery was a little more than I had anticipated. Tonight will be my first night without any narcotic pain killers. Hello Tylenol, my new best friend!” the 60-year-old comedian began on Wednesday, August 4, via Instagram. “The last night I was in a hospital was in June 2020 when I tried to take my life and overdosed on prescription pills.”
Griffin added that she’s more than one year clean.
“I now know I can do this and anything I want without those devil pills,” she wrote. “Y’know what? I fear drugs and addiction more than I fear cancer. So, I think I’ll be OK.”
The My Life on the D-List alum announced on Monday, August 2, that she had stage one lung cancer in her left lung.
“Yes, I have lung cancer even though I’ve never smoked!” she wrote hours before she went into surgery. “Hopefully no chemo or radiation after this and I should have normal function with my breathing. I should be up and running around as usual in a month or less. It’s been a helluva 4 years, trying to get back to work, making you guys laugh and entertaining you, but I’m gonna be just fine.”
The same day, Griffin revealed her secret battle with substance abuse, sparked by the fallout of her 2017 photo shoot that featured her holding a graphic severed head that resembled Donald Trump.
“I thought, ‘Well, I don’t even drink. Big deal, I take a couple pills now and again, who doesn’t?’” the Emmy winner told Nightline. “Also, my age was a big part of it. I mean, who bottoms out and tries to take their life at 59? It’s almost a joke, right, and by the way, someday, this will all be comedy. Trust me … I was laughing to stay alive. And what I found is I felt like if I can’t make others laugh, then there’s no purpose for me to live. There’s no reason for me to live.”
Griffin, who revealed she wrote a suicide note, was hospitalized and placed on a psychiatric hold. She added her husband, Randy Bick, helped her seek treatment.
“I am so thrilled and grateful. I feel like, at 60, I’m gonna get a next chapter,” she concluded. “That’s the thing everyone said wasn’t gonna happen. I believed [it] wasn’t gonna happen.”
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