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Thursday, September 1, 2011


… And God Created Gisele

How does the world’s most successful supermodel—darling of the cameras, advertisers, and tabloids, and worth an estimated $150 million—make her life even more fabulous? By marrying star quarterback Tom Brady, then setting her sights on a higher consciousness. As Gisele Bündchen embarks on her next chapter, the exuberant 28-year-old beauty tells about her secret engagement, the shock of finding out Brady’s ex-girlfriend was pregnant with his baby, and how they’re working out the bi-coastal routine of a new family.

Bounding down the stairs of her Greenwich Village town house to greet a visitor, Gisele Bündchen commands the shock value of a close encounter with a giraffe: you can hardly believe an earthly creature is built this way.

Everything about her is so elongated and slender—those impossibly attenuated limbs! the swanlike neck!—that she seems almost preposterous, like a cartoon figure. Nearly six feet tall by the age of 13, she spent her childhood being teased by classmates who called her Olive Oyl.

But Popeye’s rail-thin girlfriend never tantalized anyone with the luscious curves that catapulted Gisele to stardom in her late teens, replacing the pale, wasted “heroin chic” of that era with “the return of the sexy model.” Since then, the tanned, athletic Brazilian beach babe who seemed born to wear a bikini has become the world’s most successful supermodel, amassing a fortune estimated at $150 million; last year alone, according to Forbes, Gisele earned $35 million. The 16th-richest woman in the entertainment industry, she has been featured on more magazine covers than any other model and has appeared as the face of more than 20 brands internationally, with current contracts including Dior, Versace, Max Factor, Ebel watches, and the Dolce & Gabbana fragrance The One.

At 28, Gisele has already spent 14 years in front of the cameras, not to mention in the gossip columns—and now she’s begun a whole new chapter of her life. On February 26, seven days after our cover was shot, she married New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady in a private twilight ceremony at a Catholic church in Santa Monica that was followed by a small gathering at the couple’s home in Brentwood. But Gisele, who once described her ideal wedding as “a simple ceremony,” always knew she didn’t want an enormous extravaganza. “I don’t like parties. I prefer something more intimate, just for the closest people.”
Since Gisele Bundchen became a mother, the Top model has been outspoken when expressing her feelings about motherhood and life. In a recent interview for a recent issue of Harper’s Bazaar UK, Gisele talked about the importance of breastfeeding in the first months of a child’s life. Now, Gisele writes first-hand on the impact caused by the comment.

My intention in making a comment about the importance of breastfeeding has nothing to do with the law. It comes from my passion and beliefs about children. Becoming a new mom has brought a lot of questions, I feel like I am in a constant search for answers on what might be the best for my child. It’s unfortunate that in an interview sometimes things can seem so black and white. I am sure if I would just be sitting talking about my experiences with other mothers, we would just be sharing opinions. I understand that everyone has their own experience and opinions and I am not here to judge. I believe that bringing a life into this world is the single most important thing a person can undertake and it can also be the most challenging. I think as mothers we are all just trying our best.

Agree says:

I totally agree with Gisele. I can see the difference between my younger brother and myself. My younger brother was breastfed till he was 2 (which is the recommended length of time) and I was breastfed for about 4 months. I can clearly see the difference this has on our immune systems as my brother is very seldom sick, whereas I get sick very quickly. I would recommend that mothers breastfeed for as long as they can, up to 2 years. I know that some women can’t, due to complications or milk drying up, but if you are by the means, please do breastfeed, its the best gift you can give your child.

Roxane says:

Thank you for making a strong statement in support of breastfeeding. OK, maybe it was not perfectly politically correct but you weren’t wrong. Formula should NOT be about choice. It should be about helping the few babies to survive that truly need it. Breastfeeding has so many benefits for both mother and child that the true scandal is that companies have been allowed to devalue it and market this as some sort of lifestyle choice. It is a travesty. Keep advocating for breastfeeding please. And women who think another woman should not voice an opinion just because she is beautiful are misogynists of the highest order.

Sarah Keith says:

Thank you for your comments Gisele! I appreciate your passion and concern. I believe that the culture of breastfeeding and maternal support around the neonatal time in this country is a very big problem for parents, and I hope that culture will change soon. I don’t think that it’s a coincidence that this country has such high rates of anxiety/depression/mental illness AND very little support for breastfeeding and quality maternity/paternity leave for bonding with children…. I’m glad you spoke out and I’m sorry that the haters out there are upset with you for voicing your opinion. I hope we can find a way for mothers to feel good about both working AND parenting, and not feel like they have to choose one or the other– or feel like they aren’t “feminists” if they chose parenting.

Jeannette says:

I praise you for speaking out. Im 28 yrs. old, I have three girls. I wasn’t able to breastfeed my first born for that long. I breastfeed my second baby for eighteen months, and im still feeding my nine month old baby. I have notice the difference between my oldest who wasn’t breastfeed and the ones who where. Coming from a hispanic background I was always told since a child the importance of breastfeeding. My sister is in the army (reserves), and when she leaves for her training I breastfeed her baby girl since they are the same age. Im very happy for you and congratulation on your baby. I wish you both very good health and happiness. Hope you continue breastfeeding for a while, its a great experience!!!!!

Beth says:

I understand exactly what was trying to be said and agree that Breastfeeding is really important and I think it was a shame that the comment was twisted in such a way that an apology was felt to be needed. However I think why a number of people were upset was because some people cannot breast feed. I have a medical condition which meant that I never produced enough milk for my Son. It was heart breaking feeling that I couldn’t give him what I knew was best for him, and made me feel like a failure as a mother. What was worse were the people who told me I should breast feed exclusively and that I was a bad mother because I didn’t. It got so bad that I ended up telling a health care professional that she didn’t know what she was talking about. If I didn’t give my son formula he would die as my milk had dried up. There are a lot of vulnerable women out there in the same position who need support. I think this is probably why it has become such an explosive issue.

Christine says:

Breastmilk is made of NUTRIENTS
They will never be the same.
You are just stating FACT.
Fact should not make so many people upset.
It is simply the truth.

  Adapted from by Milton França

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