Garth Brooks is opening up about parenting in the aftermath of his divorce from his first wife. The country star married Sandy Mahl in 1986, and the pair had three daughters — now 27-year-old Taylor, 25-year-old August, and 23-year-old Allie. When the couple split back in 2001 after 14 years of marriage Brooks took a break from music and found himself living with three young girls he didn’t really know.
“I just said goodbye to music, got divorced, moved back to Oklahoma and left Nashville,” he said in a Q&A session in New York while promoting his documentary, The Road I’m On, according to Us Weekly. “I was living with three strange women that I did not know. They were 8, 6, and 4. And I was about to get a crash course in females.”
Shortly thereafter, he began dating Trisha Yearwood, the woman who would later become his wife — and the person he credits for helping ease his life. “My best friend showed up,” he recalled. “It was good.”
He explained, “She didn’t have children either. So we were kind of blind leading the blind. I’d never wished divorce on anybody, but three children and three parents worked really well, especially since the girls were all tomboys.”
“So they were all at soccer, track and field, softball. Never ever did one of those kids take the field where at least one parent wasn’t in the stands. … I love music to death, really do. But there’s nothing like loving your babies,” he said.
In the end, the family made it through it all together. “I love music to death, really do,” he said. “But there’s nothing like loving your babies.”
Brooks’ two-part documentary, The Road I’m On, begins on A&E Monday, December 2, at 9 p.m. ET.
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