Martina Navratilova's wife Julia Lemigova opens up about their relationship
Navratilova's wife Julia Lemigova opens up on how she revealed her relationship to her daughters and life after marrying the tennis ace
Former Russian beauty queen Julia Lemigova (42), who tied the knot with tennis legend Martina Navratilova (58) in a much-publicised same-sex marriage last month has spoken of a few minor hiccups the couple endured soon after they got married.
Two close: Tennis legend Martina Navratilova (in green) and partner Julia Lemigova watch the US Open men's singles semi-final between Spain’s Rafael Nadal and Richard Gasquet of France at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in September 2013. Pic/Getty Images
In an interview with British tabloid Daily Mail, Lemigova first spoke of the tough time she had accommodating the numerous boxes full of Navratilova's tennis trophies in their apartment.
Too many trophies
"She (Martina) was going to leave them in storage, but I thought they should be on display. I started to unpack them, thinking we could do a trophy wall in one room, but when I'd covered four walls and the ceiling, there were still boxes to go," said Lemigova, adding that Navratilova's silverware had to eventually be split between the three houses the couple own between them (two in Miami and one in Paris).
Lemigova married Navratilova on December 15. She admitted she couldn't hide her emotions on wedding day and had to literally "look at the ceiling to stop crying."
However, another very emotional aspect of it all was Lemigova's revelation of her relationship with Navratilova to her two daughters (from two different failed relationships), Victoria (13) and Emma (8).
"One day my eldest daughter came home (upset) from school and said people had been saying things. Not necessarily nice things — at the time same-sex marriage wasn't legal in France.
"She asked, 'who is Martina?' I said: 'Martina is someone I love.' Her eyes went all wide. I said: 'I can't imagine living without her.' Then we had a conversation about whether they liked Martina being around and my daughter said: 'I want her to live with us, too'."
Language is another fascinating issue in this marriage. While the couple speak to each other in English (Lemigova said they did try to speak in Czech and Russian, but that didn't work), the girls communicate with each other in French. Interestingly, the girls speak to Navratilova in English and to Lemigova in Russian.