Adding an “a” to the end of your name may not seem like a big deal but for model Andreja Pejic going from “Andrej” to “Andreja” signified a transformation a lifetime in the making.
Born a boy, Andreja made waves as one of the fashion world’s biggest stars, a male model working the runway in womenswear. Earlier this year, the 22-year-old hit pause on her fashion career to take the next big step: sex reassignment surgery.
“I want to share my story with the world because I think I have a social responsibility,” Andreja tells People. “I hope that by being open about this it becomes less of an issue.”
The gorgeous Andreja explains how as a child she dreamt of being a girl, but didn’t realize what options she had until a fateful trip to the library as a teenager. “I typed ‘sex change’ into Google and my life changed,” she explains. “The internet gave me the sense that there were words to describe my feelings and medical terms.”
While she found major success as a male model starting at 17, often being described as “androgynous,” Andreja said about a year and half ago she “reevaluated things.”
“I was proud of my gender nonconforming career,” she says, “but my biggest dream was to be comfortable in my own body. I have to be true to myself and the career is just going to have to fit around that.”
How is she doing post-surgery? Better than ever. “Every day is like a new revelation,” she says. “I’m more comfortable than ever. I feel at a 100 percent.”
Watch the video above to see Andreja strut the catwalk and her more about her life!