Watch Avril Lavigne perform her first new song in five years on Jimmy Kimmel

By Jessica Pollack

Avril Lavigne is back and she's got a story to tell! The Canadian star, who recently released her first new song in five years, took to the Jimmy Kimmel Live stage to perform "Head Above Water" for the first time. Clad in a flowing white gown with caped sleeves and her blond locks in soft waves, the singer belted out the powerful ballad, which is inspired by her struggle with Lyme Disease.

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This is Avril's first TV appearance in years, and a triumphant return at that! With blue lights illuminating the 34-year-old and ocean graphics playing in the background, she poured her soul into lyrics like: "God, keep my head above water / Don't let me drown, it gets harder / I'll meet you there at the altar / As I fall down to my knee, don't let me drown."

In a statement released on Sept. 19, the "Complicated" singer shared some context on the powerful single that she co-wrote, saying, “One night, I thought I was dying, and I had accepted that I was going to die. My mom laid with me in bed and held me. I felt like I was drowning. Under my breath, I prayed, ‘God, please help to keep my head above the water.’ In that moment, the songwriting of this album began. It was like I tapped into something. It was a very spiritual experience. Lyrics flooded through me from that point on.”

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She also shared that she's giving back to others with the illness through her Avril Lavigne Foundation by releasing a Head Above Water t-shirt with proceeds helping to fund treatment for those who can't afford it. Avril revealed her battle with Lyme Disease in 2015, and she's slowly been returning to the limelight over the past few years for causes that matter to her. That year, she took to the stage at the Special Olympics to perform "Fly," an empowering song that she wrote to inspire athletes and open the games.

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