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It’s been a while since we’ve seen or heard anything of Avril Lavigne and her fans have been concerned. She laughed off rehab rumours which stemmed from a Twitter conversation she had with a fan late last year, but her absence has been a source of concern for her many followers. Finally, this week, Avril cleared up the mystery for all of us.

Lavigne recalled her 30th birthday in Las Vegas last October and how it wasn’t much of a celebration. “I could barely eat, and when we went to the pool, I had to leave and go lie in bed,” she told People magazine. “My friends asked, ‘What’s wrong?’ I didn’t know.”

Following months of feeling lethargic and lightheaded, Avril got her diagnosis: she had a severe case of Lyme disease.

“I had no idea a bug bite could do this,” said Lavigne, who believes she was bitten by a tick sometime last spring. “I was bedridden for five months. I felt like I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t talk and I couldn’t move. I thought I was dying. There were definitely times I couldn’t shower for a full week because I could barely stand. It felt like having all your life sucked out of you.”

So all this time she’s been recuperating at her Ontario home, spending time with family, watching movies and keeping up with fans through social media. Her mom moved in to help care for her while husband Chad Kroeger would step in whenever Nickelback had breaks during their tour.

And while we’re sure Kroeger and Mama Lavigne helped her get through the long days and months, it was her impatient fans who comforted her during the dark times.

“They were asking about me since I was MIA, so I mentioned to one fan directly that I wasn’t feeling good,” Lavigne says, referencing that private Twitter conversation in December that went viral. “The get-well messages and videos they sent touched me so deeply.”

Avril’s now “80 per cent better” and is set to release new music later this month, like her upcoming single “Fly,” which ties in with the 2015 Special Olympics.

“This was a wake-up call,” adds Lavigne. “I really just want to enjoy life from here on out.”

So, mystery solved! No rehab, but Lyme disease. Which is crazy. Here’s hoping she’s back to 100% in no time.

To find out more about Lyme disease, head to healthycanadians.gc.ca.