Former Liberty X singer Michelle Heaton has said her Dancing On Ice debut will celebrate how she turned her life around after battling addiction.
The 43-year-old said there will be “a lot of emotion” from her and her family as she takes to the ice with her professional skating partner Lukasz Rozycki when the ITV talent contest launches on Sunday.
Heaton has been open in the past about how she previously struggled with a drug and alcohol addiction, but that going to rehab had saved her life.
Ahead of the show’s return, the mother-of-two said: “I still am in recovery and I work daily on it, the kids don’t work daily on it, they just see a happy, healthy mummy now.
“And so for having them in the audience on Sunday, I think there’s going to be a lot of emotion from them and myself.
“And just them feeling proud of me and my husband being there, and my friends who helped me along my way.
“It’s just a celebration, I think, I just want to say to celebrate that you can get over things and you can turn your life around because there was a point where it wasn’t going to be turned around and I’m just so grateful that I’m here.”
Heaton has two children, a daughter and a son, with her husband Hugh Hanley.
The singer added that she cried with happiness when she got the call from ITV and her young daughter also joined her in the moment.
“She cried with me and give me a hug and said she was so proud of me. I think the proudness comes from her mummy being well, and that the past is the past”, she said.
Heaton revealed she has also had to deal with the menopause during training which is affecting her mind.
She said: “Obviously, I’m not as sharp as I used to be. So I think Lukasz’s way of explaining things, I nod and I hear him and it’s really, really difficult to take it all in.
“But set that aside, I’ve got a good recovery programme, I still work my recovery hard, that doesn’t affect anything to do with Dancing On Ice.
“I’m just loving being here and you know, what I have got is a second chance at everything.
“And I don’t want to shut my eyes and it will be over tomorrow. I just want to enjoy it.”
Heaton also admitted that she has had a “few close misses” on the ice adding: “I think falling, hopefully, shouldn’t be part of my routine but I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s in there. I’m just a little bit dizzy, quite a lot ditzy.”
The singer was a member of the pop group Liberty X – originally consisting of Tony Lundon, Kevin Simm, Jessica Taylor, Kelli Young and Heaton – who were formed by the five finalists of the 2001 ITV talent show Popstars who failed to make it into the winning group Hear’Say.
They reunited in the ITV2 documentary series The Big Reunion in 2012 and in recent years, Heaton, Taylor and Young have performed as a girls trio.
Heaton joins drag queen and TV personality The Vivienne, actress and DJ Patsy Palmer, The Wanted star Siva Kaneswaran, former footballer John Fashanu, Love Island winner Ekin-Su Culculoglu, Olympic gymnast Nile Wilson, Coronation Street’s Mollie Gallagher, Towie star Joey Essex, comedian Darren Harriott and Hollyoaks star Carley Stenson in the line-up.
Dancing On Ice returns on January 15 at 6.30pm on ITV1 and ITVX.