When Selena Gomez took the stage at the American Music Awards on Sunday (Nov. 19), it marked her first live gig since a largely private struggle with autoimmune disease lupus -- culminating in the need for a kidney transplant -- which kept her off the radar all summer. So it was fitting that Gomez traveled straight from the awards ceremony to the Lupus Research Alliance's 2017 gala in New York City, arriving at close to 3 a.m. on Monday (Nov. 20) in order to speak at the event that night.
Onstage at the Seth Meyers-hosted gala in Midtown, where she served as honorary co-chair, Gomez shared more details of her recent kidney transplant donated by her longtime friend Francia Raisa.
"After undergoing so many tests to monitor my kidneys, my doctors ... said that I would be needing a kidney transplant. Maybe I wasn’t necessarily really good at knowing what that meant, so it actually got to a point where it was life or death," Gomez explained, clad in a canary yellow Calvin Klein dress. "Thankfully, one of my best friends gave me her kidney, and it was the ultimate gift of life."