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Between her marriage to Tom Brady and supermodel-meets-earth-goddess status, Gisele Bündchen‘s life has long been portrayed as picture-perfect. But in her new memoir, Lessons: My Path to a Meaningful Life, the Brazilian runway star gets real about the mental health issues she has faced in the past.
Ahead of the book’s release, Bündchen has revealed to People that she spent the early 2000s battling anxiety and panic attacks. A difficult flying experience in 2003 triggered a crippling fear of small, enclosed spaces such as tunnels and elevators, leaving her feeling “powerless.”
“Your world becomes smaller and smaller, and you can’t breathe, which is the worst feeling I’ve ever had,” she told the magazine about her anxious thoughts.
I am excited to share that my book will be released October 2nd! Writing this book was a transformative and intense process for me. Uncovering stories deep inside of me made me feel vulnerable and emotional, but through facing my shadows and insecurities I learned how to accept and love myself in a deeper way. My intention in writing this book is to share how I overcame certain challenges in my life in hopes that it could help others who may be going thru similar experiences. Proceeds from the book will go to project Água Limpa, to help protect water sources for future generations. http://bit.ly/PreOrderLessons 📖 Feliz em compartilhar que meu livro sairá no dia 2 de outubro! Escrever esse livro foi uma experiência transformadora e intensa para mim. Lembrar de várias histórias que estavam adormecidas dentro de mim me fez sentir vulnerável e emotiva, mas, ao olhar para minhas sombras e inseguranças, aprendi a me aceitar e me amar de uma maneira mais profunda. Minha intenção, ao escrever este livro, é compartilhar como eu superei certos desafios em minha vida, com a esperança de que possa ajudar de alguma forma outras pessoas que estivessem passando por experiências semelhantes. Meus rendimentos deste livro irão ao projeto Água Limpa, que ajuda a proteger as fontes de água para futura gerações.
A post shared by Gisele Bündchen (@gisele) on Jul 19, 2018 at 4:47am PDT
At one point, she contemplated suicide.
“I actually had the feeling of, ‘If I just jump off my roof, this is going to end, and I never have to worry about this feeling of my world closing in,'” the 38-year-old admitted.
Those dark moments prompted Bündchen to seek professional help — and ultimately end her relationship with then-boyfriend Leonardo DiCaprio because she felt “alone.” The couple called it quits in 2005.
“Everyone who crosses our path is a teacher; they come into our lives to show us something about ourselves,” she said about DiCaprio. “And I think that’s what he was. What is good versus bad? I honor him for what he was.”
A doctor’s suggestion to treat her condition with Xanax also spurred Bündchen to embrace the major wellness-oriented lifestyle for which she and Brady are now known. Concerned that she would become “dependent” on medication, she opted instead to ditch sugar, practice yoga, and give up cigarettes and alcohol.
“I had been smoking cigarettes, drinking a bottle of wine and three mocha frappuccinos every day, and I gave up everything in one day,” she shared. “I thought, if this stuff is in any way the cause of this pain in my life, it has got to go.”
Now she’s hoping that “sharing some of my vulnerabilities” will help fans see beyond the fame and wellness-focused lifestyle.
“Things can be looking perfect on the outside, but you have no idea what’s really going on,” she told People.
Lessons: My Path to a Meaningful Life is out Oct. 2.
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