Caitlyn (with a C) Jenner has arrived!
Jenner posed for famed photographer, Annie Leibovitz, and sat down with Friday Night Lights author, Buzz Bissinger, resulting in a 22-page emotional interview and photo spread—something she compared to winning the gold medal for the decathlon at the 1976 Olympics.
“That was a good day, but the last couple of days were better,” Jenner says. “This shoot was about my life and who I am as a person. It’s not about the fanfare, it’s not about people cheering in the stadium, it’s not about going down the street and everybody giving you ‘that a boy, Bruce,’ pat on the back, O.K. This is about your life.”
The 65-year-old admits to suffering a panic attack after undergoing a 10-hour plastic surgery session to feminize her face—going on to share that a counselor from the Los Angeles Gender Center reassured her that second guessing was completely natural, and only temporary, something Caitlyn confirms.
“If I was lying on my deathbed and I had kept this secret and never ever did anything about it, I would be lying there saying, ‘You just blew your entire life. You never dealt with yourself,’ and I don’t want that to happen,” she says.
Bissinger talks at length to Jenner’s four children from his first two marriages, Burt, 36, and Cassandra, 34, with first wife Chrystie, and Brandon, 33, and Brody, 31, with second wife Linda—they describe him as an insensitive and often absent father, something Jenner acknowledges and hopes to make up for now—as do they.
“I have high hopes that Caitlyn is a better person than Bruce. I’m very much looking forward to that,” says Burt. Whilst Brandon tells a cringe-worthy story about seeing Caitlyn for the first time post-surgery, and her pulling up her top to show off her new breasts.
“Whoa, I’m still your son,” Brandon says he reminded her.
Meanwhile, Jenner admits that although her upcoming E! show, which is set to air this summer, is in part, financially motivated, she’s certainly not gone through gender reassignment as a way to earn a quick buck.
“I’m not doing it for money. I’m doing it to help my soul and help other people. If I can make a dollar, I certainly am not stupid,” she says. “[I have] house payments and all that kind of stuff. I will never make an excuse for something like that.
“Yeah, this is a business. You don’t go out and change your gender for a television show. O.K., it ain’t happening. I don’t care who you are.”
“I’m not doing this to be interesting. I’m doing this to live. I’m not doing this so I can hit it off the women’s tee.”
Pick up the July issue of Vanity Fair to read the whole interview—on newsstands June 9