In her cover story, Bryant talks about how she’s navigated both her personal and professional life since the tragic passing of her husband, Kobe Bryant, and their 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Bryant. It’s been nearly 14 months since the helicopter crash changed her life forever, and some days, the grief is simply too much to handle.
“I can’t say that I’m strong every day,” she tells PEOPLE. “I can’t say that there aren’t days when I feel like I can’t survive to the next.”
Still, some days are better than others, and she’s channeled her energy into other projects, like taking charge of creative endeavors left unfinished at Granity Studios, the late star’s multi-media company she now helms. She also relaunched Kobe’s charitable non-profit as Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation, a nod to the father-daughter duo, to help empower young girls and provide equal opportunities to underserved athletes.
“This pain is unimaginable [but] you just have to get up and push forward,” she says. “Lying in bed crying isn’t going to change the fact that my family will never be the same again. But getting out of bed and pushing forward is going to make the day better for my girls and for me. So that’s what I do.”
She continues, “I guess the best way to describe it is that Kobe and Gigi motivate me to keep going. They inspire me to try harder and be better every day. Their love is unconditional and they motivate me in so many different ways.”
“My girls help me smile through the pain,” she says. “They give me strength…I want to make Kobe, Gigi, Natalia, Bianka and Capri proud.”