When Kim Kardashian-West graced The Ellen Show this week and divulged, for one of the very first times, every waking thought she had while she was held up at gunpoint in Paris last year, the audience was quiet, the world more so.
For a woman who is only ever seen through a filter of heavy make-up, mountains of money and the lights of reality TV and social media, it was a moment of surprising candour. Many sat watching, arrested by the sheer sense of vulnerability that continues to envelope the world’s most famous face, wondering if this is the most genuine emotion we will ever see from the reality TV star. There was no jewellery in sight, no colourful clothing, a simple nude-like make-up look rounding the image out.
“I’m such a different person,” she told Ellen.
“It was probably no secret, you see it on the show when I was being flashy. Like I was definitely materialistic before — not that there’s anything bad with having things and working hard to get those things, and I’m really proud of everyone around me that’s successful, but I’m so glad that my kids get this me. And that this is who I’m raising my kids as. Because I just don’t care about that stuff anymore,” she added.
For the skeptics, one only has to watch – really watch – Kardashian West’s pained expression when recalling the incident in Paris to understand that there’s some real trauma bubbling below the famous facade.
“I knew that was it for me,” she said of the moment the armed men entered her apartment. “I said a prayer; I’m like, I know I’m going to heaven, I hope my kids are okay, my husband.”
Through tears, she qualified her own pain by acknowledging it could have been much worse: “I’m out, I’m home, I’m safe, I’m such a better person, it’s okay.”
And while the world can see Kardashian West’s genuine sensitivities, there’s a lot more going on behind-the-scenes than we often care to bring into foray.