Beyoncé just gave a rare interview to Elle, where fans were allowed to write in with their most burning questions for the singer. And when one fan asked Beyoncé about her notable award snubs in the past, she gave a surprisingly candid answer.
“I connected with Lemonade and I almost passed out when I saw Homecoming,” the fan wrote. “What’s up with the people who give out awards? Were you disappointed not winning?”
Now, for those of you who don’t remember, there was a lot of outrage in 2017, when Lemonade was passed over for Album of the Year at the Grammys. Even Adele — who took home the award — questioned why Beyoncé didn’t win it.
And then this year, Beyoncé’s Homecoming was nominated for five Emmys, and lost in every category — most notably to James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke. Many folks called out racism as a factor in the snub, especially given the Emmys’ noticeably white audience.
But in her interview with Elle, Beyoncé shrugged off the snubs, and explained the deeply personal reasons why awards no longer mean that much to her.
“I began to search for deeper meaning when life began to teach me lessons I didn’t know I needed,” she said. “Success looks different to me now. I learned that all pain and loss is in fact a gift.”
She said that having miscarriages — and eventually, giving birth to her daughter, Blue — made her focus on her deeper purpose in life:
Having miscarriages taught me that I had to mother myself before I could be a mother to someone else. Then I had Blue, and the quest for my purpose became so much deeper.
And she alluded to lessons she learned from her marital troubles with Jay-Z, and how they contributed to her “quest for self”:
I died and was reborn in my relationship, and the quest for self became even stronger. It’s difficult for me to go backwards.
And, as Beyoncé explains it, going through serious struggles in her personal life put the pettier stuff like awards into perspective.
“Being ‘number one’ was no longer my priority,” she said.
“My true win is creating art and a legacy that will live far beyond me,” she concluded. “That’s fulfilling.”
Beyoncé…we don’t deserve you.
You can read her full interview with Elle here.