Gracing the cover of British Vogue for their January 2023 cover, she explains: "I don't mind at all being referred to as 'David Bowie's wife.' But I always remind people that I existed before I met him. And he was also very particular. He never introduced me by saying, 'Meet my wife.' He'd always say, 'Meet Iman, my wife.'"
WATCH: Iman shares rare video of remote home she shared with David Bowie
However, that individuality momentarily ceased to exist the moment the singer died on 10 January, 2016, after an 18-month battle at age 69.
She recalled fans and the media's reaction to his tragic passing, and the newfound attention there was on her, her life with the British icon, and their family together. They have one daughter, 22-year-old Alexandria Zahra Jones, and she has another daughter from her marriage to Spencer Haywood, 44-year-old Zulekha Haywood.
"It was too much. Too much," she said, looking back on the difficult mourning period, and doing it all with an intense spotlight on her. "We lived a very private life and suddenly it felt like there was a target on mine and my daughter's head," she confessed.
The new cover is truly showstopping
The supermodel lived in New York City at the time, and admitted: "It got to the point where we had to leave our home [in New York City] because the public were always at the front door. Which I admire. I get it. But there was a point where it was like: 'OK, go home now.'"
She added: "You had people who would take your picture, sell it and then come to you and say, 'I feel your pain,'" continuing: "And, I'm like, 'No, [expletive], you don't feel my pain, get away from me.'"
The couple were set up on a blind date in 1990
Moving shortly after to an idyllic Catskill Mountains house she once shared with the Modern Love hitmaker, she said: "Grief came to visit and stayed for a while," however maintaining: "But I was able to process that privately, here in my home."
Now her focus is not only being a mother to her two daughters, but being a grandmother as well, to her granddaughter Lavinia Rose Young. "I think of myself now as a mom and grandma first… That's my place in life."
Read more HELLO! US stories here
Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.