According to the singer, her mother raised her as a single parent after determining that Christopher Lovett “was not really ready as a father.” The decision led to “feelings of abandonment” as she felt like her father was absent simply because he wanted to be. When she and Destiny’s Child took off, she purposely instructed security to ban him from certain events unaware that he was only trying to let her know he’d never abandoned her.
“People used to tell me, ‘I saw your daughter,’ and I used to sit there and say, ‘Well, I didn’t,’ and it used to hurt,” Lovett told Kotb. “So when Kelly started performing in certain places, I followed her. And when I did go to a couple of places, I didn’t get a chance to see her because security wouldn’t let me see her. It was sad really…I wanted to tell Kelly that I love her and that I never gave her up.”
Though Kelly Rowland “wasn’t ready to deal with those feelings” at the time, she considered rekindling their relationship after the birth of her first son, Titan and approached JAY-Z for advice. “He said, ‘Love is all about risk. You gotta decide if you’re gonna jump,’” the mother-of-two recalled. “‘You gonna jump?’ That’s what he asked me: ‘Are you gonna jump?’” In short, her answer was yes.
The two eventually met at an Atlanta hotel, where they talked for two hours. “I can only imagine what it felt like to have everything that you want to say for so many years to your child,” she said. “I just allowed him the space, and it was incredible. Underneath all of the disappointment and hurt and anger and fear, that’s somebody you love.”