I have always thought Lance Armstrong was handsome. Even before he won his record breaking seven-straight Tour de France titles. Even before he divorced his wife Kristin. Even before he started dating Sheryl Crow. Actually, it wasn’t until he decided to break off his engagement with Crow that I began to think my argument that his stunning good looks overshadowed his actions was not going to stand up to my friend’s (a die hard Crow fan) rants that Armstrong was a cad.
I don’t think he is a cad. But, I did question why he and Crow had decided to part after two years of dating and an engagement that lasted a little more than five months. Now, my questions are being answered. The Grammy Award-winning singer is finally breaking her silence about her high profile breakup with Armstrong and the other blow to her life—her recent diagnosis and battle with breast cancer.
Crow spoke with Vanity Fair magazine then sat down with ABC’s Diane Sawyer for her first in-depth interview since the double-dose of heartache she suffered last winter. My heart sank when I heard that Crow told Vanity Fair that she was “devastated” by the split and that she “still loves” Armstrong. Crow went on to say, “I do think about Lance every day. And I think about his kids every day.” (Armstrong is dad to Luke, 6, and twins Isabella and Grace, 4.)
“How can you not feel for this woman?” asked my Crow-loving friend. The fact is, after hearing what a rough few months she has endured, I do feel for her. And, frankly I was a bit surprised to hear that she doesn’t hold a grudge against Armstrong. “I’m not angry,” Crow admitted. “I mean honestly, I look at it and I know I can’t be angry at Lance for being who he is. He’s a great person.” Certainly that statement leaves room for interpretation. My interpretation: Armstrong decided he didn’t want to make the union legal. Diane Sawyer took a more diplomatic approach to reading between the lines of Crow’s statement. Sawyer says, “ It’s very clear that the two of them were at different points in their lives.” Sawyer goes on to disclose that, “It was not a sudden thing. It was just a widening fissure and at some point somebody wasn’t going to be able to jump across.”
If calling off a wedding wasn’t enough to deal with, less than three weeks later, Crow was diagnosed with Stage I breast cancer. She tells Vanity Fair that after calling her parents she sent Armstrong (who was on a solo road trip from Lake Tahoe to Oregon) a text message informing him of her condition.
“It was difficult,” says Crow. “I know he wanted to be there. I would have loved for him to have swept in and carried me through.” But ultimately, she says, she realized she to turn to her family–people who could “really just be there for me all the way through this – emotionally, unconditionally.”
Currently, Crow is concentrating on her music career. She considers it part of her healing process. “I still feel bruised,” she tells Vanity Fair. “I still feel really raw and vulnerable – not just from the breakup but the whole experience.” She is currently in the middle of a North American concert tour. I can only think her busy schedule will serve as a welcome distraction.