“We all make so many choices every day, but when I look back at my life, a few “choices” stand out,” says the 55-year-old supermodel.
“I never even thought about modeling—I didn’t even know it was something to choose,” admits Cindy Crawford. While it wasn’t on her mind, she was a natural and became one of the most recognizable and successful supermodels of her generation. Her career spans decades, and allowed her to grow in the other areas of her life: acting, business, and family.
Crawford was born and raised in the small town of DeKalb, Illinois. There, she met a local photographer, Roger Legel, who asked if he could take her picture for a local paper. Her parents, Dan and Jennifer, were suspicious at first.
“They insisted they accompany me to the photoshoot because they thought he might be a creepy guy,” Crawford recalls in a Q&A with Swiss watchmaker Omega, for which she is an ambassador. “He wasn’t and he just took some pretty photos of me.”
Describing herself as a “very decisive person,” Crawford shares that she doesn’t find it hard to make decisions. “I also make a decision and I stick to it. And I move on. I’m very consistent. I don’t torture myself over making choices,” she says.
Thankfully, that decision to go to that shoot paid off, and put her on a path that was ever moving: meeting with an agency in Chicago and modeling there to eventually going to New York, being on the cover of Vogue, and having an OMEGA contract for over 25 years.
“We all make so many choices every day, but when I look back at my life, a few ‘choices’ stand out,” Crawford says.
The 55-year-old shares that she is proud that she chose to work hard when she was young. “Not just at school, but at any job I took on, like babysitting and even working in the cornfields,” she says. “I have a real appreciation for hard work and earning a dollar. That work ethic translated into how I approached modeling as a job, rather than a lifestyle.”
She is also quite proud that she was smart enough to choose her husband, Rande Gerber. Crawford says that the entertainment industry businessman has proven to be a great father and partner.
“Even though I always knew I wanted children, the choice to actually do it was the best decision of my life. Being a parent has taught me so much about love and patience,” says Crawford, whose two kids, Kaia and Presley, are also models. “I definitely think the choice to have children was probably the most defining choice of my life.”
In the same breath, she also counts her choice to give birth to them at home as a defining choice of her life. “Home birth is intense, but I loved that choice for me because, through the process and at the end of it, I felt so empowered,” she explains. ”I felt like ‘I am strong’ and it set me up for feeling ’I’ve got this, I can be a mother. I will let my instincts will kick in and I’ll know what to do’.”
Her instincts have probably been mostly right as her kids have nothing but praise for their superstar mom. In an Instagram post greeting her mom on her birthday last February, Kaia describes her as being someone who “always makes me do a double take, the woman who gets more beautiful every year, and the mother I can only hope to be like one day.”
Crawford says that she is proud of all the ways she continues to evolve and work on herself. “Choosing to embrace where I am on my own life journey rather than wish for the past is something that takes work but helps me be present and find happiness every day,” she shares.
“I think we’ve all made choices that we’ve regretted, but the way that I choose to look at that now is not to regret it and just to look at it as a lesson,” Crawford, who has been on the cover of every respectable fashion magazine there is, says.
That’s why, if you ask her if there are choices she regrets, she will resoundly say no. “Because every decision I’ve made, whether it’s been bad or good—and there have been some bad ones—that I’m not going to bring up right now, they’ve been a lesson to me,” she explains.
“So I don’t really believe in regrets,” she adds. “However, there are a few bad outfit choices I made in high school—ha!”