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Paulina Porizkova says she's finding herself after estranged husband Ric Ocasek’s death: 'I believe he was my best friend'

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Paulina Porizkova is finding who she is after the death of her late husband, Cars frontman Ric Ocasek.

The model, who is currently roughing it in Panama on the CBS reality series Beyond the Edge, shared a clip on her Instagram from an upcoming episode of the series in which she shares her feelings about Ocasek’s death with fellow contestant and Full House alum Jodie Sweetin.

Paulina Porizkova speaks to Jodie Sweetin on CBS reality series 'Beyond the Edge' about grieving her late husband Ric Ocasek and becoming her own person. (Photo: Mike Pont/WireImage)
Paulina Porizkova spoke with Jodie Sweetin on the CBS reality series Beyond the Edge about grieving her late husband Ric Ocasek and becoming her own person. (Photo: Mike Pont/WireImage)

“I was married for most of my life. I met my husband when I was 19,” she explained. “He was my North Star. I oriented my world to where he was. So when he died … to be honest, I’m here because I’m trying to find out who I am. Not as a couple, but just as me, goofy P.”

Sweetin consoled a teary Porizkova in the clip, and told her she’s “so happy” she’s on this path.

In the caption of her post, the anti-ageism advocate shared how important this journey was for her as a single woman.

“A moment between my new wonderful friend Jodie and I. We became sisters in the jungle. Sleeping next to one another on bamboo, sharing our histories, massaging each others achy parts and helping one another to pull our Lycra pants back on after hosing off with cold water,” she wrote. “Yes, my husband and I were going through a divorce when he unexpectedly died. We hadn’t been husband and wife for three years prior, but we were family forever, and I believed he was my best friend. I never imagined life without him.”

Ocasek died in 2019 at the New York City home he and Porizkova shared. The two had already separated at the time. He had cut Porizkova out of his will months earlier. She told CBS Sunday Morning that the nature of their relationship “made the grieving process really, really tricky.”

“I would love to be able to be sad and miss him,” she said. “And also not feel this incredible hurt and betrayal.”

While Porizkova wrote in her caption that there is “much more to this story,” she added, “life does go on, and I chose to live for moments of sunshine — like finding new friends. People you can trust with your life. I’ve gotten much better at finding them. And here in the jungle with Jodie and the rest of the cast, I found unexpected blessings.”

The former America’s Next Top Model judge has previously opened up about feeling controlled by Ocasek. On the Conversation with Amanda de Cadenet, she said she often felt like Ocasek’s “treasured possession” as opposed to his wife.

“He didn't want me to go anywhere,” she noted. “He wanted me to be within his circle at all times. I was his sole emotional provider for everything, and I confused that with love.”

Porizkova also spoke to Yahoo Life about the effort to fin herself again following Ocasek’s passing.

“Right now I feel like I'm in a much stronger position than I have been in a long time,” she said. “I feel like I'm getting my voice back and reclaiming who I am. My biggest hope for the future is to continue to figure out who I am on my own. I've been a part of a couple for so long that finding out who I am outside of a couple is really hard and really traumatic. I don't like it, but it's like taking cod liver oil — it's good for me. I don't like how it tastes, but it's good for me.”

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