Real talk: We aren't worthy of Selena Gomez' strength and resilience. The 25-year-old singer took the stage at the 2017 AMAs for her highly anticipated first live performance of "Wolves," and it was just as inspirational and moving as it was visually stunning.
She began lying on the ground, seemingly ejected from a red vehicle, surrounded by smoke and prickly pine leaves. But, unlike the Old Taylor, Gomez was far from being — or looking — dead. Slowly, she rose from the ground, but as soon as she got on her feet, a pack of dancing wolves surrounded her and, between perfect pirouettes, did their best to pull her back down as if she were some flimsy rag doll.
The number, directed by the brilliant Petra Collins, seemed like a metaphor for Gomez's year. Over the past six months, the "Fetish" crooner has undergone an invasive kidney transplant and a subsequent surgery, has gotten together and broken up with The Weeknd, and has seemingly rekindled her on-again-off-again romance with childhood sweetheart Justin Bieber. The media has been with her every step of the way, praising her bravery one minute and obsessing over her very personal life the next.
Through it all, Gomez has held her head up high, handling both outside criticism and her personal setbacks with style, grace, humility, and heart. She's talked openly about her experiences with mental health and therapy, being bedridden, what it was like being a child star in the spotlight, all while making time to speak out on pressing social issues that affect her fans.