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Brooke Shields, 56, says femur break made her ‘more emotionally ambitious’

Brooke Shields has opened up about how she became ‘more emotionally ambitious’ while recuperating from her broken femur and subsequent staph infection, saying she is ‘still in recovery’ and building her strength nearly seven months later. 

The actress, 56, broke her right femur in late January after she fell off a balance board at a gym in New York and underwent two surgeries to insert metal rods and plates into her leg. While recovering at home, she developed a serious staph infection that required her to return to the hospital for emergency surgery and three blood transfusions. 

In an interview with WSJ. Magazine, Shields reflected on trying to find meaning in the freak accident while sharing what she learned in the month she spent in the hospital. 

‘It’s hard. Everybody wants to find a meaning to things: Why did this happen and what lesson might we be learning? Truth be told, s**t happens. It just happens. Freak accidents happen. Mistakes happen,’ she said.

Candid: Brooke Shields, 56, opened up about what she learned while recovering from her broken and femur and subsequent staph infection during an interview with WSJ. Magazine 

Trauma: Shields broke her right femur in January after she fell off a balance board at a gym and underwent two surgeries to insert metal rods and plates into her leg

Trauma: Shields broke her right femur in January after she fell off a balance board at a gym and underwent two surgeries to insert metal rods and plates into her leg

Complication: While recovering at home, she developed a serious staph infection that required her to return to hospital for an emergency surgery and three blood transfusions

Complication: While recovering at home, she developed a serious staph infection that required her to return to hospital for an emergency surgery and three blood transfusions

‘I was completely by myself in the hospital because of COVID, and I was in the hospital for a month. And, you know, I didn’t need to find spirituality. I didn’t need to slow down. I didn’t need to learn anything like that. But evidently I needed to build my confidence in myself.’

Shields, who had to learn how to walk again in physical therapy, added that the experience made her ‘really want to share that message with people,’ explaining that ‘it’s so easy and it’s such a shame to give up, first and foremost on yourself.’ 

‘I almost became more emotionally ambitious, and I became much more aware of how I wanted to spend my days,’ the mother of two said. 

‘When you take something like your body, which we just take for granted, how much it does for us, then to all of a sudden be not able to even walk or stand, you realize how lucky you are.’ 

Lesson: Shields, who had to learn how to walk again, said the month she spent in the hospital taught her that she needed to build her confidence in herself

Lesson: Shields, who had to learn how to walk again, said the month she spent in the hospital taught her that she needed to build her confidence in herself

Moving on: Shields, pictured in April, said that she became 'more emotionally ambitious' as well as more focused on how she wants to spend her days after her horrific accident

Moving on: Shields, pictured in April, said that she became ‘more emotionally ambitious’ as well as more focused on how she wants to spend her days after her horrific accident 

Shields proudly showed off the deep scar on her upper thigh in a bikini last month during a sweet beachside photo shoot with her daughters Rowan, 18, and Grier, 15, whom she shares with her husband of two decades, Chris Henchy. 

She also recently posted photos of herself working out with her personal trainer Ngo Okafor in late May, but she admitted that she’s still not 100 per cent better.  

‘I’m still recovering. I’m working on strength now and trying to get limber again, doing a lot of stretching,’ she told WSJ. Magazine of her goals. 

‘I’ll usually take a Pilates class or a spin class at 8:30 in the morning; sometimes there are stretch classes in the morning, and I like to do that, because once 9:30 happens, I’m then completely on Zoom or working or tied to my desk.’

Role model: Shields proudly showed off the deep scar on her upper thigh in a bikini last month during a sweet beachside photo shoot with her daughters Rowan, 18, and Grier, 15,

Role model: Shields proudly showed off the deep scar on her upper thigh in a bikini last month during a sweet beachside photo shoot with her daughters Rowan, 18, and Grier, 15,

Recovery: Shields also recently posted photos of herself working out with her personal trainer Ngo Okafor in late May, but she admitted that she's still not 100 per cent better

Recovery: Shields also recently posted photos of herself working out with her personal trainer Ngo Okafor in late May, but she admitted that she’s still not 100 per cent better

Goals: The mother of two said she's 'still in recovery' and working on regaining her strength getting 'limber again'

Goals: The mother of two said she’s ‘still in recovery’ and working on regaining her strength getting ‘limber again’

Shields, who lives in New York City but is spending the summer in the Hamptons, also dished about her daily routine and what makes her feel good inside and out.  

‘I happen to love Mondays…. Every time I wake up, I’m excited to have a new beginning, and I mean that seriously,’ she said, sharing how she enjoys a protein shake and a cup of PG Tips tea every morning before her family wakes up. 

Shields also drinks eight ounces of celery juice in the morning, noting that organic celery tastes ‘sweet,’ not ‘bitter.’   

‘I notice my skin and my digestion and everything just feels better when I drink celery juice,’ she said. 

The cover star, who has been modeling since she was a baby, said her skincare routine is fairly simple. Cleaning and moisturizing her face are of the utmost importance, and she also uses a vitamin C serum and eye cream. 

Outlook: Shields, who struggled with postpartum depression nearly two decades ago, praised Simone Biles and other athletes for 'lifting the shame and the taboo' surrounding mental health

Outlook: Shields, who struggled with postpartum depression nearly two decades ago, praised Simone Biles and other athletes for ‘lifting the shame and the taboo’ surrounding mental health

Blessed: Shields, pictured in June, said her accident has made her realize how 'lucky' she is

Blessed: Shields, pictured in June, said her accident has made her realize how ‘lucky’ she is 

The cover star, who has been modeling since she was a baby, said her skincare routine is fairly simple. Cleaning and moisturizing her face are of the utmost importance, and she also uses a vitamin C serum and eye cream. 

To treat her dry skin, she has started dry brushing her body before bathing. While in the shower, she rubs a ‘milk oil’ on her skin, which she said has helped with the texture.   

Shields has been an advocate for mental health following her struggle with postpartum depression nearly two decades ago, and during her interview, she weighed in on how mainstream the conversation about mental health has become. 

Olympic gymnast Simone Biles made headlines last week when she withdrew from the team final to focus on her mental health, a decision that was applauded by many. Biles, 24, later dropped out of the all-around, uneven bars, vault, and floor competitions, but she plans to return to the beam final on Tuesday. 

‘I think it is so necessary. I’m sad that it took this long,’ Shields said. ‘With what we’re seeing in the news during the Olympics and we’re seeing these young people not be afraid and take a stand, we’re lifting the shame and the taboo of it. That’s what’s needed, especially for our young people.’

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