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The supermodel and the rockstar were one of the most legendary couples in their time. How does Iman envision a future without the love of her life by her side?

David Bowie, with a scintillating career spanning over four decades, changed once and for all what it means to be an artist. 

His illustrious body of work and live performances had an indelible influence on the evolution of popular music. Described unanimously as a visionary artist, he broke down barriers in more ways than one, whether it was through his androgynous visual style or his innovative reexamination of the rock genre. Suffice to say, his loss is irreplaceable, and his legacy will perpetually loom over the entertainment landscape, regardless of whoever aspires to follow in his footsteps. 

His creativity and showmanship take center stage when discussing his cultural footprint, but his relationship with Iman Abdulmajid deserves just as much interest, if not more. The two shared one of the sweetest love stories in recent history, but unfortunately, the significance of their relationship didn’t quite register until David’s tragic death a few years back. As such, everybody has turned their attention to his widow and how she could move forward without the love of her life by her side. 

You expect her to move on from David at some point or the other, perhaps with a new partner if the opportunity presents itself, but the Somalian-American model is of a different mind. Let’s reflect on their journey and how Iman has coped with her husband’s death:

Their “predestined” love story started with a surprise blind date where they felt an immediate attraction

Iman and David Bowie (Photo by Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)

David Bowie met Iman in 1990 through a mutual friend and hairdresser, Teddy Antolin. As per the supermodel, neither David nor Iman knew their friend was setting them up, so they approached the group dinner like any other. “And it was four of us. David, the hairdresser, and the boyfriend, and me,” said Iman on Naomi Campbell’s No Filter with Naomi. Looking back, Iman thinks their first meeting was fate working its magic. They immediately felt a spark and knew there was a connection to be explored and built upon. “I truly in my heart feel it was predestined,” she added. 

David felt the same: one glance at the model, and he was taken. He felt an “immediate” attraction and just knew in his heart she would become his one true love. He never tried pursuing romance elsewhere. 

My attraction to her was immediate and all-encompassing. I couldn’t sleep for the excitement of our first date. That she would be my wife, in my head, was a done deal. I’d never gone after anything…with such passion in all my life.

David Bowie to Hello! Magazine

David proposed to Iman a year later, arranging a boat ride for them in Paris and orchestrating a light show at each and every bridge they passed by. It’s the stuff of fairytales, really. They married on 24 April 1992 at a small, intimate church in Lausanne, Switzerland. For the wedding reception, they headed to a 16th-century Medici mansion in Florence, Italy, where they celebrated their union with their friends and family in a gorgeous, exquisite ceremony fit for the stars. Their only child, daughter Lexi, was born in 2000.

What made their romance iconic was not just their celebrity status but their mutual desire to break boundaries. It wasn’t just always intentional, but it came through anyway. They were stylish, they were sophisticated, they were considered luminaries in their respective arenas; it was difficult being a couple in their time and not aspiring to their lifestyle or passion. David Bowie famously said, “You would think that a rock star being married to a supermodel would be one of the greatest things in the world. It is.” 

His belief in the strength of their partnership illustrates how they perceived themselves and their love; they thought they were inconquerable, and in a way, they absolutely were. They supported each other in their artistic ventures and believed in being traditionally romantic until the very end.  Their togetherness triumphed a lot of uncertainty, especially in an era where celebrity divorces are rampant and extramarital affairs are second nature. 

Iman feels his presence every day and refuses to remarry 

David Bowie and Iman (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)

Naturally, David’s death left Iman devastated. He was the love of her life, her best friend, her protector, her most cherished companion who’d promised to walk her through the biggest obstacles in her way. “Since the day we met, until the last minute when we walked down the street, he would never let me walk on the outside. He always moved me to the inside,” she said, recalling his kind and gentle spirit. 

How in the world do you recover from an epic story like this? If we as an audience still feel the essence of one of rock’s greatest virtuosos, how could Iman even begin to make peace with her grief? According to Iman, the grief never really leaves you, and you will struggle with the pain nearly every day. “Sometimes, I don’t want people to know how sad I am,” she told Net-A-Porter Magazine. She added that everyone assumes she’s just a strong, resilient woman to go through the process in the limelight, but really, she’s just trying to hold the fort. 

When asked if she plans to remarry in the future, Iman said a clear no. She doesn’t want to remarry because she still feels married to David. She feels his presence every day, the memories keeping their love alive and strong. She won’t ever refer to him as her late husband; he was and is always going to remain her husband, and even though he may be physically gone, their relationship will never be tainted. It exists through their daughter, through their interest in art and nature, through the properties and assets they’d collected and refurbished over the years; it is omnipresent and permanent. 

Someone a few years ago referred to David as my late husband and I said ‘No, he’s not my late husband. He’s my husband. 

Iman to PEOPLE Magazine

Of course, some of the memories will sadden her and remind her of everything she’s missing out on. But most of the memories represent something positive; they embody the spectrum of what David was and the mark he left on the world. They remind her of the wonderful times they shared, the bond they nurtured over time, and how they drove each other to be their best selves. “There are days that are harder than others but the memories are not all sad of why the person isn’t here. The memories are now of how great it was,” the 56-year-old told PEOPLE. 

The greatest love stories never die

There’s obviously a great deal of romanticization that takes place when you begin to look at power couples and how they came together. Were David Bowie and Iman perfect? Probably not. They likely faced their share of challenges, but all in all, their love was as flawless and endearing as humanly possible. When you go through such an emotionally rich and fulfilling relationship with someone else, it is a futile exercise to try to find someone to replace them. The love never fades; it only gets more contagious and overwhelming amidst the grief. 

Though it is possible Iman does find it in her heart to remarry down the line, we should note her dedication to her marriage and how she continues to hold David in her heart. Sometimes, grief never goes away, and so you learn how to resume your journey with its presence by your side. 

More inspiring celebrities:

Cherish the one you love
“True love stories never have endings.” – Richard Bach