With chart-topping new music, an X-Factor gig and her 30th birthday, Kelly Rowland had an amazing 2011 any measure. But she says there's one thing that would make it even better: reuniting with her estranged father.
Rowland hasn't seen her 65-year-old dad, Christopher Lovett, in 20 years, when her mother and she left him—reportedly to escape his alcoholism and abuse. “It’s really important just to forgive my father," Rowland said on X-Factor. "I want to meet him this Christmas, because now is the time, because tomorrow’s not promised to us. I think it’s important to forgive people, and we move on—we have to. The pain is there, of course it will be there, and it’s important to know that forgiveness is the first step towards healing it all.”
This past June, Lovett contacted U.K.'s The Mirror in hopes of reuniting with his daughter and to explain how they lost touch. “I am a proud man and wanted the best for my family, so when I lost my job I was utterly ashamed and hid from that shame [by drinking]," he said. "When [Kelly's mother] challenged me, I would just lose it. No parent should scream and shout in front of their child, and I am sorry to say there were too many times to mention that Kelly heard me screaming abuse at her mother. Sometimes she would run to her bedroom screaming, others she would cling to my trouser leg begging me to stop. When the electricity was cut off and we received an eviction letter, we agreed for Doris to take Kelly to her aunt’s house while I sorted things out. Little did I know the day they left would be the last time I would see my wife and daughter ever again. Every time I phoned her aunt’s house she told me Kelly and her mom were out. I had no job, no money, no car and just no way of getting the 20 miles to where they were staying. When six months had passed I begged a friend for a ride to her aunt’s house and she told me they had moved to Texas. I begged her to give me an address, but she flat-out refused.”
He continued: "I knew I had to stop drinking, get a job, or I would never see my daughter again. And I did. But by then it was too late and they were gone, the two people I loved with all my heart and that tore me up and still does today... I had heard she was doing well singing, but I didn’t know how well until I turned on the TV and saw her performing [with Destiny's Child]. I cried and cried, with sadness but also with pride at what a wonderful, talented young woman Kelly had grown into.”
We sincerely hope that Lovett and Rowland can reconnect and reconcile.