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Sophie Grégoire -Trudeau: A Modern Icon
Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau was an impressive lady before she became known as the wife of the Prime Minister of Canada - Justin Trudeau.
Though Sophie's husband may be getting most of the attention these days, Sophie is already garnering a massive following and some well-deserved admiration.
Raised in Montreal, Canada, Sophie knew Justin Trudeau and actually attended school with Justin Trudeau's younger brother, Michel. (Tragically, Michel died in an avalanche in 1998.)
Sophie was a few years younger than Justin, so their interaction was limited, but of course, this would change later on.
"Being in the spotlight comes with social responsibility, and I wish to use it wisely. When I inspire someone, I feel inspired back." - Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau
Sophie, by all accounts, was always a dedicated and determined person. She is known in Canada as a passionate activist, generous volunteer, graceful speaker, and also a bit of a star as a television personality.
At the heart of Sophie's numerous passions is being an advocate for women and children. She speaks about self-esteem, eating disorders, (which she has personal experience with) and mental health issues.
Sophie speaks for the Dove "Pay Beauty Forward" Program", 60 million girls foundation, The Canadian Cancer Society, Women's National Committee Canada, The Looking Glass Foundation, The Vagina Monologues, Sheena's Place, and several more.
Sophie's involvement in charities, and being active in her own communities is what sets her apart from many other celebrity women in positions of power.
This is what makes Sophie's existence so meaningful for Canadians with the election of her husband, Justin.
Sophie is fully bilingual, speaking both English and French. She worked in the newsroom at LCN, becoming their residential cultural reporter.
Sophie has a Bachelor's in Communications from the University of Montreal, as well as another degree from the school of radio and television in Montreal.
Sophie worked for five years at CTV's eTalk Quebec as a cultural reporter and went on to host and report for a variety of other shows in Canada. This made her well known in the celebrity world long before she married Justin Trudeau.
The Looking Glass Foundation is close to Sophie's heart. Here's what it's about...
Sophie has been open about her struggle with the eating disorder, bulimia. When she was a teenager and into her twenties, Sophie hid her problem and it became serious, resulting in loss of weight and extreme weakness.
When Sophie finally revealed her condition to her mother, her parents immediately found her help and supported her the whole way through. From that experience, Sophie has become a spokesperson to help save and support young girls who suffer from eating disorders.
Sophie is passionate about the idea that eating disorders are not just a physical ailment, but a mental illness, mixed in with emotional issues, and to feel a sense of control.
When she speaks about bulimia, Sophie tells parents to always watch for warning signs, such as constantly going to the restroom right after eating, loss of hair, bloodshot eyes from vomiting, or always wanting to eat alone.
Sophie now uses yoga to calm her anxieties and focus her mind. She is dedicated to practicing yoga and completed her teacher training for yoga at the Shri Yoga in Montreal. This included finishing 200 hours worth of yoga training.
Sophie now teaches yoga to children as well, volunteering at public schools to do so. She credits yoga with helping her stay in tune with her body and recovering from bulimia.
Sophie stated about bulimia in one interview, "I don’t say I’ve moved passed it, but rather, moved through it. And it doesn’t define who I am."
"There have been rumors about infidelity in the marriage, which come with any high profile relationship, but Sophie has gracefully brushed it off, preferring not to give attention to the salacious gossip."
Sophie & Justin
The story of how Sophie began her romance with Justin Trudeau is an interesting one.
As the story goes, after not seeing each other since they were in their early teens, Sophie came across an article about Justin in the newspaper and had a feeling they were meant to be.
When Sophie told her mother this revelation, her mother laughed, because many girls wanted to date Justin Trudeau. Justin was a bit of a heartthrob, and was a well-known celebrity in Canada due to his father, Pierre Trudeau, being the 15th Prime Minister of Canada for over ten years.
About a year after seeing Justin in the paper, Sophie was teamed with him to co-host a charity event, quite randomly. It was then that they were reunited and a flirtation began.
Sophie sent Justin a follow-up e-mail, to which he never responded. About three months later, Sophie ran into Justin on the street and he apologized for not responding to her e-mail. Then Justin proceeded to ask for her number. Sophie said no. She later said that she had wanted him to "work for it."
And so he did. Justin got a hold of Sophie's phone number, called her up, and they went on their first date. Things went very well.
Apparently Justin told Sophie on that first date, "I've been waiting 31 years for you, you're going to be my wife, we're going to have a family together."
And the rest is history.
The couple married in 2005 and went on to have three children, Xavier James Trudeau, Ella-Grace Margaret Trudeau, and Hadrien Grégoire Trudeau.
Sophie is an enthusiastic mother and tries to stay involved in her work, charities, and physical fitness routine, while also caring for her family at home.
There have been rumors about infidelity in the marriage, which come with any high profile relationship, but Sophie has gracefully brushed it off, preferring not to give attention to the salacious gossip.
Sophie is open to the fact that she and Justin are a normal couple with relationship challenges just like everyone else.
"I’m almost kind of proud of the fact that we’ve had hardship, yes, because we want authenticity. We want truth. We want to grow closer as individuals through our lifetime and we’re both dreamers and we want to be together for as long as we can." - Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau Regarding Her Marriage
"I literally had an out of body experience while breastfeeding. That we have a responsibility to save every child, and save each other. It made me feel closer to everybody on this planet." Sophie Grégoire Trudeau
A Modern Lady
Though many tongues are wagging over Sophie's sense of fashion and sparkling looks, it's not just those things that make her the force that she is. It's her earthy, genuine, and determined energy that seems to excite those around her.
The sincere concern that Sophie has demonstrated in her desire to make the world a better place for her children and all children may come off as idealistic, but there's a punch behind her words. Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau does mean business.
One of the many things Sophie has done to expand her charity work is traveling to Africa with her mother-in-law, Margaret, working to build wells and bring fresh water to the people there.
Sophie's feeling toward helping others is displayed in the action she chooses to take. She is a woman who pushes forward, staying true to her word.
Sophie's grace and empathy toward lending her voice, presence, and time to so many organizations are reminiscent of the late Princess Diana in some respects.
One thing is for sure. Canada has certainly won more than just a new Prime Minister. They've won hope for the future reflected in this dynamic couple and their family.
With Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau at her husband's side in leadership, there's no doubt Canada will give birth to a fresh outlook and exciting progress.
© 2016 Michelle Zunter