The holidays bring families together even if it’s only over FaceTime.
That’s what Ariana Grande and her estranged father, Edward Butera, experienced this Christmas, as evidenced by the pop star’s Instagram Story on Tuesday. Grande, 25, shared a black-and-white picture of herself FaceTiming with him.
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The conversation comes a few weeks after the release of “Thank U, Next,” the singer’s chart-topping hit, which briefly addresses her relationship with her father.
Towards the end of the single, she says, “One day I’ll walk down the aisle/ holding hands with my mama/ I’ll be thanking my dad ’cause she grew from the drama.”
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According to a 2014 cover interview with Seventeen magazine, the Nickelodeon alum fell out of touch with Butera the year before. She described it at the time as “one of the hardest things” she’d ever had to deal with.
“It’s private … It took me so long to be okay with it,” she explained.
“The thing that got me there was embracing the fact that that I am made up of half my dad, and a lot of my traits come from him,” Grande said. “So much of me comes from my father, and for so long, I didn’t like that about myself. I had to accept that it’s okay not to get along with somebody and still love them.”
Butera, a Florida-based graphic designer, and Grande’s mother Joan split when their daughter was 8, according to Entertainment Tonight. For Father’s Day 2017, the singer shared a photo of her dad holding her as a baby, and she captioned it, “I love you.”
The digital reunion comes at the end of a complicated year for Grande.
Earlier this month, during a speech at Billboard’s Women in Music event, she described 2018 as “one of the best of her career” and one of the “worst of her life.” She struggled to hold back tears as she talked about the death of her ex-boyfriend Mac Miller and her whirlwind failed romance with ex-fiancé Pete Davidson, among other topics.
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“I’m not saying that for sympathy,” Grande said. “I’m just saying that because I think a lot of people would look at someone in my position right now … and think, ‘She’s really got her s— together,’ ya know? Like, ‘She’s really on it.’ Like, ‘She’s got it all.’ “
“I do, but as far as my personal life goes, I really have no idea what the f—k I’m doing so yeah, it’s been a very conflicting one … I just want to say if you’re someone out there who has no idea what this next chapter’s gonna bring, you’re not alone in that,” she said.
“I’m really looking forward to embracing whatever happens … I look forward to hopefully learning to give some of the love and forgiveness that I’ve given away so frivolously and easily to men in the past to myself hopefully this year,” The “God Is a Woman” singer concluded. “I have everything I’ve ever dreamt of having, and as of late I’ve discovered that it’s the things I’ve always had and the people I’ve always had that still make me the happiest.”