Nick Cannon Commends Ex-Wife Mariah Carey for Helping Him Through Lupus Diagnosis in 2012: “I Probably Wouldn’t Be Alive”

Nick Cannon never seems to miss an opportunity to praise those he loves and cares about – it’s one of the many things he does well and often. He stayed true to that character during a recent appearance on The Diary Of A CEO podcast with host Steven Bartlett – a conversation that lasted nearly two hours. 

About 1:20:00 into the interview, Nick Cannon started talking about how his diagnosis with lupus in 2012 changed his mindset and made him value the ‘now’ in his life – made him appreciate being present at the moment. Up until then, he always knew he had a ‘ticking clock,’ but it became more apparent in 2012. 

His health struggles began in January 2012 when he was hospitalized and treated for ‘mild kidney failure.’ He was hospitalized again in February 2012 after a pulmonary embolism – which is ‘a sudden blockage in your pulmonary arteries, the blood vessels that send blood to your lungs’ according to Penn Medicine

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It wasn’t until March 2012 that Nick Cannon revealed the primary cause behind his medical issues – lupus nephritis, which is inflammation of the kidneys caused by systemic lupus erythematosus link). At the time, he had been married to Mariah Carey for four years and they had 1-year-old fraternal twins together.

“She was my rock, man – she went hard. To be honest, I probably wouldn’t be alive if it wasn’t for how hard she went, you know, with the doctors, with me, my stubbornness,” he said of his then-wife. “She was the perfect help-mate, the perfect matriarch, the perfect mom, the perfect wife in those scenarios.” 

He goes on to explain how hard it must’ve been for Mariah – who was a global superstar at the time and was already dealing with ‘all the pressures of being Mariah.’ Nonetheless, she was still ‘loving enough to take on all of my stuff’ – which both brought them closer together, but also took a toll on their relationship. 

“It probably took a toll on us just because of the person I was in my head and the struggles that I was dealing with. So, it probably took a toll on our relationship, but it definitely brought us closer together,” Cannon says to Bartlett. Cannon and Carey divorced in 2014, but they still have a strong relationship. 

Nick Cannon Opens Up About Not Being Afraid to Die

Steve Bartlett then asked Nick Cannon what struggles he was going through at that time – not just physically, but mentally. He talked about the many different questions that were going through his head while he lay on that hospital bed not knowing if this was it for him – knowing that he could very well die. 

“What was life all about? Had I wasted my time up until this point? If I get another shot what am I going to do? Am I going to be able to be here for my children? Am I not going to be able to be here for my children? What am I leaving them? What am I leaving the world when I exit?” he said of those questions.

He explains how a lot of people don’t ask themselves those types of questions because we ‘get caught up in the constant rat race of just living day-to-day.’ His life slowed down on many different occasions and his lupus diagnosis was definitely one of them. Nonetheless, he admits he wasn’t scared of saying goodbye. 

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“That’s the crazy thing – when you get to that point of like, ‘Oh okay, I had a good run,’” Nick Cannon added. When asked if he was happy at that moment, he responded – “I would say I was content. I wasn’t scared,” he said of his mental state at the time. “When you’re not afraid of dying, you’re focused on living.”

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