Volosozhar's interview with Savchenko

TAHbKA

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Volosozhar held an instagram interview with Savchenko
V: How do you feel being a mom?
S: Much better than I though I would. The pregnancy was hard- I spent most of it in bed thinking how do the other women do it? I feel much better now, I love and appreciate my mom even more now -it's such a hard job being a mother and I can't imagine having another or well, 3 kids. It's a huge work which is underpayed.
V: I agree. You have 3 brothers, right?
S: Right. Mothers are heroes. Thank you, mothers.
V: Do you get some help?
S: My husband, of course, my parents before the insanity - they were here and helped, it was irreplaceable, but now they are back to Ukraine. My girl sometimes cries and sometimes I want to have an hour just for myself - to take a shower.
V: For me the best thing was to drive to a shop, if I had someone to watch the kid for an hour I was the happiest person on earth, yet I would rush home
S: Of course the feeling is comprehensible, you have to be a mother to understand it
V: I remember pregnancy was hard, but it was all worth it once my daughter was born. You said you spent your pregnancy in bed - was it health?
S: I got pregnant and found out during AOI and I just couldn't move, I was nauseous, I was sick, I didn't want to do anything. I would go running, get to the first bench, sit down and just catch some sun. It was really hard. I was healthy, I just lacked energy. I was sleeping during the day, even my husband was asking whether am ok, I just lacked energy. I couldn't want for Amilia to be born.
V: The name - was it your choice? It's so pretty
S: Thank you. It was hard to decide on the name - she was born and for 3 days we couldn't decide
V: It was the same for us!
S: I wanted something special, unusual, a name you don't meet every day, that sounded international - am from Ukraine live in Germany, my husband is English.
V: The last name - why double?
S: Back to the first name - I was looking for a name and decided to wait till I see her face and then decide. When she was born we couldn't decide. In the hospital she was named just Savchenko-Cross and all were laughing asking what is her name. We would reply `Savchenko-Cross' and people were asking whether its' the name or we are going to get one for her. After we looked at her we decided on Amelia Savchenko-Cross. As for the last name - I kept my last name when we got married - too much paperwork. Husband kept his name, so when Amilia was born we decided to give her both last names.
V: We did the same. Our story was different - I wanted traditionally to give her the husband's name, Maks was against so we decided on the double last name. So many things went the same. And the wedding - 18/8
S: Right. I always dreamed getting married in a special date - I wanted 18/8/2018, when I was still in Chemnitz I was dreaming if I ever get married - which dated should it be. When I met Liam, however, I wanted to marry at once and not wait. When we came to his parents, I said I don't want to get married, so 18/8/2016. I said the date and his parents - they also got married on 18th! His mom brought me her shoes and dress and the box said 18/08 of some other year, I couldn't believe it. So it was fate.
V: How did Liam react when you revealed the gender or you didn't reveal?
S: We both wanted a girl or twins. If it was a boy - well, I already have 3 brothers, it's enough boys and I was dreaming of a girl. I went to visit a friend after taking the gender test, I got a phone call and was told it's a girl. I was crying and Liam was not beside me. My friend asked me what happened ,why am I crying, and I was like `A girl!' I called Liam and said `it's a boy!' and I was crying, and Liam didn't believe- he said you wouldn't be crying if it was a boy
V: The subscribers say the next should be a boy. I dont' mind.
Which language do you speak to the girl?
S: Liam in English, I in Russian and German. My parents in Ukrainian. Sometimes the friends try speaking to her French. I speak Russian to her, sometimes it's easier for me to say something in German - I mainly speak it, so sometimes. Russian is quite international, so I think she should know Russian and Ukrainian.
V: subscribers: which language do you think on?
S: Oh.. no idea. When I speak Russian I think Russian, when in German - German, when in English - English. Sometimes when am tired all the languages disappear and its' hard finding the words. So sorry if something goes wrong.
V: When your kid will grow up - you are both artists, will she become a skater or what will she be doing?
S: She is a very active kid, she is moving all the time, she wants to learn it all at once, when Liam is painting she is watching, when am practicing she is moving with me. Liam has a talent being an athlete, he just never did it, so I think if she wants to become one she'll be able to. I'm grateful to my parents who put me in the sports - I can't imagine my life without the sport and figure skating, which is more of an art than sports, I can't think of anything better than be where I am.
V: Tell you story- do you remember coming to the ice?
S: First my parents were watching figure skating a lot and dad really wanted to skate, but there were no opportunities where he lived. Family was always interested in sports and in figure skating. When I was 3 I was asked what do I want for my birthday and I said skates. Read it in my book! Dad said ok, let's try, skate on a puddle or on a lake. We had a lake near our house ,my dad put me on the skates and we were just chasing each other. Dad could skate a bit.
V: Were your parents part of your career after?
S: My parents still support me. They always supported me. Had I not wanted skating they would probably... there is time when the kid does not want to skate - just because they had a bad day, they would explain me that I should think, but if I don't want to skate I don't have to. If you make your kid skate it will probably not end well, in my case - I wanted to skate and my parents supported.
V: from the subscribers: you both started you career in Ukraine, do you remember your teachers? Of course!
S: Of course! I started skating with well, my dad, then the coaches between the groups and then Inna Shostak - she disciplined me, I have great memories of her. When I was 8, i.e. I spent about 3-4 years with her, she had a maternity leave and then Galina Kukhar took over - she came from the Moscow theatre and was accepting the new kids. Later we were skating in her group - she was coaching the singles, later the pairs. When she was coaching the singles and was away she would give us to some other coaches. But still, from the age of 9 till 17-18, till 2002 I was skating with Galina Kukhar. A huge thanks to her, I think without her we would not be where we are today. All the coaches gave us something, taught us something.
V: I completely agree about your words about Galina Kukhar - she was teaching us both on and off the ice - her advice off the ice was priceless. I started in Dnepropetrovsk, my mom wanted to be a skater but was impossible. My first coach was your fathers' relative - Petrovskaya. She taught me for about 3 year and then moved to a more senior group to Pashkovskaya. So who is Petrovskaya to your father? Is she her sister?
S: No, her husband is fathers' classmate. So she is not really related, but think in a way we are all related. Well, we were good friends, when I visited Dnepropetrovsk I would stay at their place, we really know each other for a long time.
V: I.e. you could call them relatives. When they were talking they said you are related.
S: I have a question to you: do you plan to make Angelica and athlete?
V: Funny, she asked to skate. Maks and I were against - we know what it is like. When we were participating the show she saw a little girl, she wanted to skate as well, while she was 1.8. It was hard to say `no' to her, she had so much fun when I was carrying her on the ice. We don't make her skate, but when I go on the ice to prepare for a show she comes with me, skates for half an hour and then she either stays with my mom or Maks. When we ask her who she wants to be when she grows up she says `a skater'. I guess it's just because she sees us skating. I think it's the only reason
S: Why didn't you want her to be a skater?
V: You went through it yourself
S: I liked it
V: Am afraid of it - the pairs skating, if she will be as short as me, I will be afraid if she becomes a pairs skater. I'm a helicopter mom. But if she wants to - there is ice dance, there are singles. She does gymnastics, ballet, there are so many hobbies, it's important to focus on one thing, for me as a parent is important to find what is she best in and support it. If it's skating - it's fate. Perhaps our kids will compete one day.However, if she will become a skater I will not be able to coach her. Mom is mom, she has to focus, so mom has to be outside the rink.
S: There are moms like Yutta Muller, so she got to the Olympic medal. So you can never tell.
V: You coached yourself. Tell how was it? I haven't coached professional athletes yet
S: It was a very interesting process. I love kids, I can say it's harder than skating yourself. I don't know , I liked and disliked it. Perhaps am not yet there, perhaps am not yet ready to coach, am still skating myself, I want to skate myself, I didn't have enough yet. I think while I still can - why can't I skate myself if there is an opportunity. I will always have time to become a coach. It was an experience that helped me understand I want to keep skating, but perhaps I'll coach in the future. It's a hard work. On one hand I like sharing my knowledge with the others, but not everyone accepts it the way you want , not everyone can show what you want. I think it's a very hard work that is very time consuming.
V: I heard the same from Maks when he started working with Tarasova/Morozov - the amount of emotions every day - a coach, a shrink, a parent. In what mood the athlete will come, how is his life and if it's a pair it's even more. So a huge bow to all the coaches. What kind of coach are you?
S: I think the coach should be strict. But.. they should understand the state of mind of their skaters, when to push harder and when to let go. It's a very fine job. I don't know. It also depends on the age of the kid - the kids below 14 perhaps need more pushing, after 20 something completely different and after 30 - a different thing. I had different stages and each stage.. If my last coach was coaching me when I was younger perhaps I wouldn't reach my highs.
V: Where do you get your inspiration from?
S: I love what I do and it inspires me and makes me work to be better today than I was yesterday.
V: Will you come back or you're done?
S: I dont' know. Now we are in a limbo now, we are home quarantining and we just want to be back into the normal life, forget the competitions. Just be back on the ice and have our lives back. It will not be the same, but at least back
V: You had 5 Olympics. What were the most memorable moments? Well, except for the victory and what did yuo take with you to the next?
S: Every Olympics had a different story and a different experience. First Olympics I was 17-18 with Stas Morozov. First time you come with your eyes wide open, the ice seems huge, the Olympic rings are special and you have to skate.. do something unreal which you have never done before. I.e. I was learning from my mistakes, because the first Olympics I was thinking its' the Olympics! I have to show my best and then you fail the elements you can do through your sleep. Each Olympics were a stage and a learning stage and by the 5Th Olympics I got it
V: How did you set yourself up for the LP after the fail in the SP? What did you say to yourself?
S: When I came to the Olympics I was shocked - we go on the ice and the rink is the same colour as my dress,I couldn't believe it. My team mate Annicka Hokne and I were standing there and she said something must happen here! And I thought ok, let's see what happens. And after the 4th after the LP I knew I couldn't do a thing - just go out there and do my best and let the destiny decide. I was sure there will be a miracle -it can't be that I made such a journey and it would be for nothing.
V: You had so many supporters everywhere, everyone were supporting yuo and wanted you to win. So will we see you in 2022? Wait, we asked it. So Takahashi switched to ice dance. Will you risk switching to singles?
S: Well, if my partners will decide not to skate... The singles - I think that is behind me.
V: In Germany? Why not?
S: well, thanks for the idea. Well, if I ever land a quad I might try. Without the quad there is no point.
V: Do you have a dream?
S: I just want everyone to be healthy and things to be back to normal. The rest of the dreams will come later, I think.
V: We were talking about the feelings , do you have a feeling when coming to the competition knowing things will go ok, or you felt that things were wrong?
S: Yes. I do have a feeling, I trust it. If I feel things are wrong I understand it and try to act accordingly if it's possible. And you?
V: The same. There were some competitions that I would come and think it's just all wrong, it would eat me and I would try to set myself but it just happened. Yet there were competitions where you came and things just went smoothly. So yes, I had a feeling as well. I think it's important for an athlete that you control. Do you have an advice how to deal with the stress?
S: don't mind anything, all our rituals are stupid. Don't mind all these superstitions and just try to set yourself for something positive. I always tried thinking positive and chase away the bad thoughts. I think breathing is also very important. Inhale, exhale before going on the ice.
V: I agree with you. What did you feel after winning the Olympics.
S: OMG... I woke up and we had lots of interviews to do. I don't even remember what was happening. When I came to the Olympic village, we were part of the team event, I got sick on the plane and I was competing under the weather. When we got to our competition I was just praying that it would go away and it could come later if needed. After the skate I was really ill. It all came - the emotions and all. After all the interviews I couldn't even believe it happened and it took me a very long while - a year I couldnt believe it happened. You understand it now, but still I would love to get that feeling back. But at that moment the emotions were overtaking.
V: Can you compare the Olympic medal and your daughter being born - can you compare?
S: No. Daughter - it's something from above. It's more than the Olympic gold and all the other medals.
V: It's a piece of love and happiness that you can't explain.
S: Yes, when you see half of you and half of your husband and your parents in one person and it's part of you.
V: I agree.
S: Medals are one thing, but it's not comparable.
V: It's a door into the new life. Do you have a dream what to do next- a show? sport? The next goal?
S: For now we are translating the book to Russian, it's the next dream.
V: Wait, so tell about the book.
S: Yes, it's in English. Alexandra Ilinykh wrote it and now she is translating it to Russian. We can't wait for it to be published. Half a book is already translated and by July it should be ready. We don't yet have an exact date, but it's a process. It tells about my journey, my tears. I haven't yet read your book, but I would love to read it. Let's switch books when we meet.
V: Maks and I collect the athletes biographies. I want one signed!
S: Sure
V: A message to your fans?
S:Stay healthy, make your dreams come true - if you dreamed of something you would do home - do it now! It's a time we should spend somehow anyway, let's hope for the best. Thank you so much for supporting us, we love you, without you we wouldn't be the way we are, the results would be different -we were skating for you and we will skate more for you - if not in competitions in the shows, with our kids or with our pupils. Please stay healthy!
 
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rfisher

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:shuffle: I sort of expected her to answer the question about the Olympics versus the birth of her daughter to say Olympics! :lol: She so wants to go again in 2022. I wonder if she'll somehow convince Bruno? Volo is probably the best thing to ever happen to Trankov.
 

Michalle

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This was really great! I would love to see more interviews like this, skaters interviewing other skaters. It felt truthful and informative and interesting without being mean or confrontational. Of course it helps that they seem to know each other pretty well and so not every pairing of skaters would be able to get to this level in an interview, but it's nice to see it here!
 

TAHbKA

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I kind of hated this `interview'. First their language - ok, Savchenko speaks with a lovely German accent in Russian, which is understandable, but Volosozhar's vocabulary was sort of poor - I would expect a woman who spoke Russian her whole life to be well, more well spoken.
The questions - some were asked by the fans and Volosozhar just voiced them. Am sure the FSU could compile a better list of questions.
There was no connection between the questions, i.e. once Savchenko answered something Volosozhar did not try to develop the subject (and she would not - she is an athlete, not a journalist). I would leave it to the journalists to interview and for the athletes to answer.... (I was translating as they spoke, so I had no idea what would I hear..)
It was a waste of Volosozhar - she is an Olympic champion herself and I would rather have them both answer the questions than having Volosozhar a reading questions parrot.

I think there was Amodio interviewing Medvedeva; Tuktamysheva interviewing Chen and Lina Fedorova interviewing half of the current team Russia. I did not like any of those....
On the other hand I could listen to Bobrova's interviews the whole day long - while her skating was not my favourite thing, her way of presenting herself, putting her thoughts into words and OMG, that deep voice :swoon:
 

Zemgirl

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It was very obvious that Volosozhar is not a professional interviewer, but this does provide some insights about their lives, and it's nice for them to collaborate like this.

Savchenko seems like a different person than she was just a few years ago - still ambitious, but with much more balance and calmness in her life. I liked her acknowledgement that she needed different types of coaches at different points in her life, and that as good as her final coaching situation was, it might not have worked for her earlier.
 

Finnice

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Thank you, TAHbKA! The happiness of both these great Olympic Champions makes me happy!
 

Bigbird

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I'd like Bobrova to interview Ilinykh or vice versa. Two very well spoken ladies and they seem to have bonded over their children.

Hmmmm..
 

TAHbKA

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I'd like Bobrova to interview Ilinykh or vice versa. Two very well spoken ladies and they seem to have bonded over their children.
I don't recall an interview by Ilinykh which was not `I skated really well, I want to thank my fans'.
 

Bigbird

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I don't recall an interview by Ilinykh which was not `I skated really well, I want to thank my fans'.
I know Ilinykh may not make for the traditional Russian interview subject because she is quite discrete and tactful and that's why I appreciate her interviews. They tend to be rather classy. IMHO, it would be interesting to see if anyone could pull her out of her shell so to speak. To each their own, I guess.
 

aftershocks

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I like how their mutual undertanding of each other's journey came across. I especially enjoy how they both put being 'a mother' in a whole different category than being an athlete. There's no way to compare or to say which is better. Each experience is very special. But the act of giving birth is completely incomparable and mostly indescribable, based on what I've heard and seen from most parents.

How resonating and thought-provoking is that part about the compelling need to love and to nurture your new baby, while also trying to balance the need to take care of yourself and to have some time to yourself (even as part of you is still concerned about your newborn and/ or your toddler and your young child).
 

reut

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I don't recall an interview by Ilinykh which was not `I skated really well, I want to thank my fans'.
One of the recent ones which was just the first that came to my mind (LOL and you even translated it here, I guess we see it very differently then):
 
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reut

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I think there was Amodio interviewing Medvedeva; Tuktamysheva interviewing Chen and Lina Fedorova interviewing half of the current team Russia. I did not like any of those...
I don't really see those as interviews, but as friendly chats and then my approach to them is also different from those I have to professional interviews. I actually quite like that during this "lockdown time" a lot of such conversations appeared, in Russian, in English ("On Ice Perspectives" has started to hold these now, Kiira Korpi did a few already), Sara Hurtado does some in Spanish. Unfortunately I really don't have time to catch up on all of them, but I did watch this specific chat between Aljona and Tatiana and I really enjoyed it. Maybe it wasn't very informative and/or had a smooth flow, but even the fact of such talk between these two specifically was already lovely.
 

sus2850

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I very much liked this talk with Eladj Balde. I mean he does not really need elaborate questions, it is just great to listen to him, I liked esecially when he explained his move to Detroit.
 

skylark

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V. Maks and I were against (daughter being a skater). We know what it's like. ...
S: Why didn't you want her to be a skater?
V: You went through it yourself
S: I liked it

This is lovely. I've heard other skaters say they don't want their kids to be skaters (Tanith and Charlie White most recently) ... but they always say, of course, if he/she really wants to do it they will allow. But Aljona is a completely different breed of skater, she loves competing and said she doesn't find it stressful.

I also enjoyed their interchange on becoming mothers. For me, it's an experience that changes the world. It's so validating to hear olympic champions say the same.

I wonder, if anyone who's a figure skater, or been one, can enlighten me on why many skaters are emphatic about their own child not being one? Is it they realize that they grew up with stress, had an unusual childhood ... or perhaps that now they've experienced life as an adult without the constant, hard work that's always the same day after day, that's what they want for the child? Any thoughts. :)
 

aftershocks

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I very much liked this talk with Eladj Balde. I mean he does not really need elaborate questions, it is just great to listen to him, I liked esecially when he explained his move to Detroit.
Thank you so much for sharing. Is it only part 2 of this interview that is available?

I love these exchanges, and I hope we get to see more of them. ♥
 

TAHbKA

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I wonder, if anyone who's a figure skater, or been one, can enlighten me on why many skaters are emphatic about their own child not being one? Is it they realize that they grew up with stress, had an unusual childhood ... or perhaps that now they've experienced life as an adult without the constant, hard work that's always the same day after day, that's what they want for the child? Any thoughts. :)
(disclaimer: gave up skating at the age of 6) It's a constant pain. When they talk about `overcoming' and `pushing themselves' it's not just nice words - just working on your flexibility daily is painful, falling on the ice is painful, spinning is painful (Ruh mentioned she had mild concussions while spinning), simply tying your boot laces is painful. All the body image and eating disorders are not fun and while it seems Volosozhar was spared many girls (especially pairs girls) were not. So I would guess being constantly hungry is painful. I would assume such an amount of pain is not something a parent would want for their child.
 

Bigbird

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(disclaimer: gave up skating at the age of 6) It's a constant pain. When they talk about `overcoming' and `pushing themselves' it's not just nice words - just working on your flexibility daily is painful, falling on the ice is painful, spinning is painful (Ruh mentioned she had mild concussions while spinning), simply tying your boot laces is painful. All the body image and eating disorders are not fun and while it seems Volosozhar was spared many girls (especially pairs girls) were not. So I would guess being constantly hungry is painful. I would assume such an amount of pain is not something a parent would want for their child.
Truth. Also knowing that there is very little that you can actually control especially in ice dance is also frustrating. Talent and hard work will only take you so far. If you don't have the required exterior and body type and submissive/agreeable personality you will be dumped. It's sort of painful to watch a child suffer through all that. Better to take on something that's a bit more objective.
 

sk8nlizard

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V. Maks and I were against (daughter being a skater). We know what it's like. ...
S: Why didn't you want her to be a skater?
V: You went through it yourself
S: I liked it

This is lovely. I've heard other skaters say they don't want their kids to be skaters (Tanith and Charlie White most recently) ... but they always say, of course, if he/she really wants to do it they will allow. But Aljona is a completely different breed of skater, she loves competing and said she doesn't find it stressful.

I also enjoyed their interchange on becoming mothers. For me, it's an experience that changes the world. It's so validating to hear olympic champions say the same.

I wonder, if anyone who's a figure skater, or been one, can enlighten me on why many skaters are emphatic about their own child not being one? Is it they realize that they grew up with stress, had an unusual childhood ... or perhaps that now they've experienced life as an adult without the constant, hard work that's always the same day after day, that's what they want for the child? Any thoughts. :)
I was a figure skater...not at the level of these people but I made Nationals (called Junior Olympics when I went) as a Juv and Intermediate in pairs and made sectionals in singles 4 times. For me, it was that skating is such a HARD sport. There is a lot of sacrifice without much reward. I had a modified school schedule, and missed out on a lot for my skating. Now, I loved (still love) to skate and wouldn’t trade it for anything but it isn’t a recreational sport really. It’s expensive even at the recreational levels and your skills don’t increase unless you are there a lot. Also, for girls, there are so few slots to reach Nationals. Both my children know how to skate but don’t skate competitively. My oldest is a gymnast which is somewhat similar to skating but the cost Is substantially less and many more kids qualify out of state (which would be like regionals for skating). My youngest is a jack of all trades, master of nothing. I was sad when my kids didn’t want to be competitive skaters but also happy.
 

Barbara Manatee

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This is lovely. I've heard other skaters say they don't want their kids to be skaters (Tanith and Charlie White most recently) ... but they always say, of course, if he/she really wants to do it they will allow. But Aljona is a completely different breed of skater, she loves competing and said she doesn't find it stressful.

I also enjoyed their interchange on becoming mothers. For me, it's an experience that changes the world. It's so validating to hear olympic champions say the same.

I wonder, if anyone who's a figure skater, or been one, can enlighten me on why many skaters are emphatic about their own child not being one? Is it they realize that they grew up with stress, had an unusual childhood ... or perhaps that now they've experienced life as an adult without the constant, hard work that's always the same day after day, that's what they want for the child? Any thoughts. :)
Charlie and Tanith have said they worry that having parents who are Olympic medalists would place too much extra pressure and expectation on their son. Figure skating is wonderful but it's hard enough without also knowing you'll always be compared to Mom and Dad and have little chance of matching their success.
 

sus2850

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Thank you so much for sharing. Is it only part 2 of this interview that is available?

I love these exchanges, and I hope we get to see more of them. ♥
I watched live, so do not really know. I guess you could PM her if you have an instagram account.
 

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