Paulina Porizkova has opened up about the depression and anxiety she has been struggling with since she moved out of the New York City townhouse she shared with her late husband Ric Ocasek for three decades.
The 55-year-old model took to Instagram on Monday to share a candid photo of herself looking weary with her hand over her eyes. In her lengthy caption, she admitted that she feels a ‘physical heaviness’ and ‘constant tears.’
‘Here’s the truth. While I thought the hard part was carrying the burden — it turns out setting the weight down is what really undid me,’ she wrote. ‘Starting last year — since my husband got diagnosed — I’ve been on a strange journey.’
Weary: Paulina Porizkova, 55, has shared that she has been struggling with depression and anxiety since she moved out of her New York City townhouse
Memories: Paulina and her late husband Ric Ocasek lived in the Gramercy Park home for three decades. She found The Cars frontman dead in townhouse on September 15, 2019. He was 75
It’s unclear what diagnosis Paulina was referring to her. The Cars frontman suffered from both hypertensive heart and coronary artery disease. He had been recovering from surgery when Paulina found him dead in their home at age 75 on September 15, 2019.
A New York City medical examiner determined that he died from hypertensive and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease with pulmonary emphysema being a contributing factor.
Paulina said the past year has felt like she is ‘paddling a canoe in a stormy sea’ with her sons Jonathan, 26, and Oliver, 22.
‘My boys are in the back, scared but preoccupied,’ she wrote. ‘Sometimes the waves are smaller and easier to navigate, some days I lose my paddle and waves threaten to overwhelm.
‘But I know my purpose is to get myself and my kids to safety, to the beach. Now we are here. With no reason to keep standing — it seems I’m just gonna fall. What I want is to stay in bed indefinitely and cry.
Deal: Paulina and Ric’s townhouse sold for $10 million earlier this month
‘Depression and anxiety are familiar to so many of us,’ she continued. ‘I tend to be on the anxiety spectrum — which — oddly —sort of gives you energy and propels you —if you learn how to use those jitters. Depression is a different beast, although they are always lumped together. Depression is a complete lack of any sort of energy.’
The mother of two said that while she keeps posting on Instagram, she has ‘zero energy to reply or interact’ with anyone.
‘This feeling of incredible physical heaviness, lack of energy, and constant tears — is, by the way, as much physical as it’s emotional,’ she noted.
‘It started Friday, creeping up on me like a very stealthy cat sneaking up on its prey. While I thought a good night’s sleep would make it go away — I woke up Saturday with an utter lack of interest in anything. Including getting up.
‘This for me is day three in which I feel like my bones are made of lead pipes.’
Grateful: On Tuesday, the model thanked her fans and friend for their support while sharing a picture of herself reading ‘Keep Moving: Notes on Loss, Creativity, and Change’
Hard to handle: Two weeks ago, Paulina posted a final photo of herself sitting on the cheetah-print carpet in the empty living room of her townhouse
Memories: Over the past four weeks, Paulina has shared candid photos of herself packing up all of her belongings ahead of the difficult move
Paulina explained that the physical heaviness she feels has made it difficult to even take care of her pets. She admitted her dog Ludwig burping makes her ‘angry and tearful,’ while her cat Oskar wanting breakfast makes her ‘want to punch him across the room.’
‘Clearly, I would NEVER act on those impulses,’ she stressed. ‘I’m sharing them so you know if you ever felt that way, it’s ok. As long as we don’t act on them.
‘There is nothing in the world I want to eat or do,’ she wrote at the end of her post. ‘And the boxes heaped all over the house are just gonna stay there…DONT WORRY GUYS, I am not suicidal. I just feel really really bad.’
Nearly 19,000 people liked the post in support of Paulina, and more than 4,700 shared their well wishes in the comments, including many of her fellow models.
‘Sending strength and prayers your way. Love your honesty,’ Cindy Crawford wrote.
‘Thanks Cindy,’ Paulina replied. ‘A little empathy is all I need right now.’
Spacious: The living room in the 5,760 square-foot home features 20-foot high ceilings and a funky cheetah-print carpet
Special: The townhouse boasts a stunning study, which Paulina said was the only room in the house that was decorated to her taste
The model replied to many of the people who reached out to her, even though she admitted in her post that she didn’t think she had the energy to do so.
Petra Nemcova penned a message in their native Czech, writing: ‘Posílám hodně lásky a síly drahá Paulinko. Děkuji za tvou otevřenost,’ which translates to: ‘I send a lot of love and strength dear Paulinka. Thank you for your openness.’
Helena Christensen simply commented: ‘Call me [heart emoji].
Paulina returned to Instagram on Tuesday to thank her friends and fans for their ‘outpouring of love and support.’
‘I wish I didn’t need the love and empathy quite to the degree that I do — but since I do — thank you all for providing me with it,’ she wrote. ‘The most wonderful thing about posting raw feelings is when someone else tells me they feel the same way, and I just helped THEM to feel less lonely.
‘It makes ME feel less lonely, and at the same time, makes me feel like I helped someone,’ she noted. ‘Talk about a two-way street. But I’m also a writer. I write to share with YOU. And when I’m heard, well, that’s why I write.’
Looking back: The author recalling writing her book ‘Model Summer’ in the study, which used to be a room with a sauna
Depressed: Paulina has admitted to suffering from a ‘physical heaviness, lack of energy, and constant tears’ since the move
Along with the post, she shared a picture of herself reading poet Maggie Smith’s inspirational book ‘Keep Moving: Notes on Loss, Creativity, and Change.’
‘Here’s the perfect companion for me right now: lets me do as I wish and access it where I want; is full of deep observations — some that speak of how I felt, some that speak of how I feel, and some that speak of how I hope to see all those feelings when they are but a memory,’ Paulina wrote of the book.
‘Thank you @maggiesmithpoet for @keepmoving, just as many of you say — keep moving one little step at the time.’
Over the past four weeks, Paulina has shared photos of herself packing up the townhouse after confirming that it had finally sold.
‘Yes, the house that’s kept us all safe for thirty years, is now to embrace another family. I had a little talk with it when it was being shown, and told it to woo the sort of people it wanted. Or I’d sell it to Russian developers,’ she captioned a picture of herself stepping out of her longtime home with a cardboard box in her arms.
‘The house picked its next family. And I must say: it couldn’t have picked a better family,’ she added. ‘The spirit of art and love will stay right here where it belongs.’
Ready to go: Two weeks ago, she posted a selfie that shows movers packing her boxes in a truck behind her
Pick-me-up: Paulina later posted a photo of herself getting her hair dried after a routine cut and color, writing: ‘No reason to be curled up crying in an empty house with bad hair’
Paulina posted pictures of herself packing up some of her favorite rooms in the house, including her personal study.
‘Gonna miss my study. We had it built in the place of the sauna that was here originally,’ she explained. ‘The only thing I’ve ever had built according to my specifications — to my taste.
‘I sat here for years writing my novel “A Model Summer,”‘ she recalled. ‘I’d always get major inspiration right around five and six o’clock, and then my kids or husband would barge in to my little treasure box here and demand I get dinner. I wish I had sometimes told them to get ME dinner.’
Paulina and Ric had quietly separated in 2017, and their Gramercy Park townhouse was originally listed in 2016 for $15.25 million, according to The Real Deal.
Less than a month after Ric’s death, it was put back on the market for $13.9 million. After another price slash, the sale of the home closed last month at $10 million.
Dating back to the 1850s, the 5,760-square-foot, four-story townhouse has five bedrooms, 4.5 baths, a back garden, and a private recording studio.
Sold: The mother of two first shared a snapshot of herself packing up the townhouse in late September while revealing a another family was moving in
Moving: She had garbage bags filled with stuff lined up in the hallway in her townhouse. She revealed a lot of the stuff was going to Ric’s granddaughter Olivia Otcasek
Two weeks ago, she posted a selfie that shows movers packing her boxes in a truck behind her, writing: ‘The trucks are here. Two hundred and nineteen boxes, all packed by me and @katerinawinemixer_. Plus — with a little help from my friends. And this is just the beginning of the end.’
The next day, she posted a photo of herself getting her hair dried at Joshua Barbieri’s hair salon after a routine cut and color.
‘No reason to be curled up crying in an empty house with bad hair,’ she joked. ‘So a little refresher in my favorite color (champagne) and lop off a few inches…’
On October 16, she shared a final photo of herself sitting on the cheetah-print carpet in the empty living room of her townhouse.
‘Last two days in my house. It’s empty, cold, and dirty. I’ve never cried as much as I have in the last year,’ she wrote. ‘I was never a crier. In fact, the opposite. I took a lot of care NEVER to be seen crying. This year has shown me I had tears to spare. Thank you, all of you, my new insta friends out there in the Instagram ether for your continuous support and love.’
Memories: Paulina first met Ric on the set of The Cars’ music video for ‘Drive’ in 1985
Family: Ric and Paulina, who had two sons during their marriage, quietly separated in 2017, but they had not yet finalized their divorce when he passed away
Paulina has been incredibly candid about her struggle to deal with her grief over Ric’s passing as well as her feelings of ‘hurt and betrayal’ over his decision to cut her out of his will in the wake of their separation.
He also left no provisions for his two eldest sons, Adam and Derek, from his marriage to Constance; however, his other four children were all included.
During an appearance on CBS This Morning in February — Paulina’s first interview since her estranged husband’s passing — she opened up about her conflicting feelings for Ric, admitting that she was devastated by his decision to cut her out of his will because he felt she had ‘abandoned him.’
The couple was separated and going through a divorce when he died, but because they were not legally divorced, Paulina, as his widow, may be entitled under New York law to an ‘elective share’ of his estate.
Ric specifically addressed the rule in his will, stating: ‘Even if I should die before our divorce is final… Paulina is not entitled to any elective share… because she has abandoned me.
However, unless it can be proven in court that she did abandon him, she will likely be entitled to a one-third share of the musician’s assets, which are listed as $5 million in ‘copyrights’, $100,000 in ‘tangible personal property,’ and $15,000 in cash.