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10 Things We Learned from Angelina Jolie’s First Post-Divorce Interview

In her first interview since her divorce with Brad Pitt back in September 2016, Angelina Jolie opens up about life after Brangelina in Vanity Fair‘s September issue. With one of her most important work yet, First They Killed My Father, set to debut this fall (and at TIFF 2017!), all eyes are on Jolie and her son Maddox, who worked closely with his mother on the Netflix-produced film about his country Cambodia, and Jolie’s best friend and author, Luong Ung.

Probably one of the most shocking celebrity divorces in Hollywood history, everyone has been eager to find out what happened to one of the the industry’s biggest power couples. While there were rumours saying Pitt had an altercation with 15-year-old son Maddox on a flight from France, it seems like Jolie’s recent interview with film writer Evgenia Peretz confirmed things were not all roses in the Jolie-Pitt household as we had all once had believed. According to the Academy award-winning actress, in the summer of 2016, “things got bad.”

“I didn’t want to use that word…Things became ‘difficult,'” she immediately corrected herself.

Back in May 2017, Brad told his side of the story in a raw interview in GQ‘s summer issue. He talked about his long history of “boozing” and how he could have been a better dad. And while the story surprised us all, it did not surprise Jolie. But similar to her ex-husband’s story mea culpa, the actress/humanitarian did not address the rumours surrounding the public divorce and whether or not she and her ex-husband are on speaking terms. She did, however, reveal, “We care for each other and care about our family, and we are both working towards the same goal.”

Behold, here are 10 of the most memorable things we learned from Jolie’s first post-divorce interview.

1. She and her six children lived out of suitcases for nine months.

After filing for divorce in September 2016, Jolie said she spent the past nine months moving around all around the world with the kids and staying in rentals. Since she needed “a good place fast, somewhere secluded, with a lot of rooms,” she decided to set up camp in a 11,000-square-foot Beaux-Arts mansion (once owned by filmmaker Cecil B. DeMille) inLos Feliz, which has six bedrooms, 10 bathrooms and a library. The house is said to be listed for around $25 million.

2. Their lifestyle was not the reason behind the divorce.

While there were rumours saying Pitt didn’t love the their nomadic lifestyle (for the better lack of term), the award-winning actress was quick to shut that down.

“[Our lifestyle] was not in any way a negative,” said Jolie. “That was not the problem. That is and will remain one of the wonderful opportunities we are able to give our children…They’re six very strong-minded, thoughtful, worldly individuals. I’m very proud of them.”

3. Her children are currently healing from “things in life.”

Although Jolie said in the interview she doesn’t want to talk about the breakup (you know, because of the kids), she did make one thing clear: “[My kids] been very brave. They were very brave in times they needed to be. We’re all just healing from the events that led to the filing…They’re not healing from divorce. They’re healing from some…from life, from things in life.”

4. She doesn’t want her kids to worry about her like she worried about her mother, Marcheline Bertrand.

“I was very worried about my mother, growing up—a lot. I do not want my children to be worried about me. I think it’s very important to cry in the shower and not in front of them. They need to know that everything’s going to be all right even when you’re not sure it is,” she said.

5. Luong Ung is one of her closest friends and has been her source of comfort.

Angelina and Ung met and clicked during one the actress’s first U.N. missions in 2012 where she and other NGO workers were dealing with land-mine issues. Ung, who was a Cambodian orphan herself, was one of the reasons why Jolie came to adopt her eldest son Maddox. Angelina turned to her friend when her life started unravelling in 2016. “She’s that girlfriend who rolled up her sleeves, got on a plane, and helped me on Christmas morning,” said Jolie. “She’s been my closest friend. I cried on her shoulder.”

6. She credits acupuncture as the cure her recent development of Bell’s palsy.

Amidst last year’s craziness, the actress developed Bell’s palsy, a result of damage to facial nerves, causing one side of her face to droop. “Sometimes women in families put themselves last, until it manifests itself in their own health,” she explained. Jolie credits acupuncture for her full recovery from the condition.

7. She’s never felt more like a woman until recently.

“I actually feel more of a woman because I feel like I’m being smart about my choices, and I’m putting my family first, and I’m in charge of my life and my health. I think that’s what makes a woman complete,” she said.

8. She’s reconnected with her estranged father, Jon Voight.

“He’s been very good at understanding they needed their grandfather at this time. I had to do a therapy meeting last night and he was just around. He knows kind of the rule—don’t make them play with you. Just be a cool grandpa who’s creative, and hang out and tell stories and read a book in the library,” said Jolie.

9. Right now, family comes first.

It looks like Angelina will be taking a small break post-production. “I’m just wanting to make the proper breakfast and keep the house. That’s my passion. At the request of my kids, I’m taking cooking classes. As I go to sleep at night, I think, ‘Did I do a great job as a mom or was that an average day?'”

10. Her lifestyle is not normal, but that’s okay.

“I never woke up and thought, I really want to live a bold life. I just can’t do the other. It’s the same as I can’t make a casserole. I cannot sit still. I’ve been trying for nine months to be really good at just being a homemaker and picking up dog poop and cleaning dishes and reading bedtime stories. And I’m getting better at all three. But now I need to get my boots on and go hang, take a trip.”

When she made a joke to her nine-year-old son Knox to “pretend to be normal,” he said “Who wants to be normal? We’re not normal. Let’s never be normal.”

“Thank you—yes! We’re not normal,” Jolie responded. “Let’s embrace being not normal!”

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