Geri Halliwell has revealed the "poignant" secret behind her performance with the Spice Girls at the Olympics closing ceremony.
The singer, who celebrated her 40th birthday with her bandmates in rehearsals for the show, said the performance was particularly emotional because it was held on her late father's birthday.
She told Hello! magazine: "Sadly he died six months before the Spice Girls, when I was 21. So doing the Olympics on his birthday was so sweet and poignant for me.
"It was a wake-up call, dealing with that pain and loss, then turning it into drive."
Geri said the four other Spice Girls helped her celebrate the milestone birthday in the run-up to the big night.
She said: "The girls were very sweet and made me feel special. There was a cake, lovely presents - an elegant, pretty necklace - and singing of course.
"No matter what's happened in the past, we love and accept each other. I always laugh most when I'm around them."
The mother of one, who has struggled with her weight, said she no longer diets but does avoid sugar and alcohol.
She said: "If I'm going to find the balance of being a mum and having a social life, I just can't put a hangover in there."
And she said she has her eye on a new man, saying: "I'm not going into details. Right now there's nothing serious. I was a late starter on the romantic front. I didn't start dating until I was in my 30s. I quite like having somebody to cuddle. I like that intimacy, it would be wonderful."