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Kaela Humphries Didn’t Just Wake Up One Morning And Decide She Wanted To Be A Model

Having recently signed with Ford +, the 28-year-old, size 16/18 Humphries — sister of New Jersey Net player and Kim Kardashian's ex Kris — talks about how it feels to move to New York to follow her dream of becoming a model. As told to Amy Odell.

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I’m going to be 29. I’m like the mother model. I’m Kris’s older sister (a lot of times people think I’m younger). I’m not just becoming a model because someone told me I’d be good at it — I’ve actually thought about this for quite a long time and been working on different things to get myself prepared, so it hasn’t been overnight. I think when people read about me and my life, for other reasons, they think I just woke up today and thought, I want to be a model.

I’m moving to New York in the beginning of April. When I signed, I clicked with my agent Gary Dakin instantly. I think the team at Ford is just amazing. They’re grooming me and coaching me to get me ready for this job, but they have fun doing what they’re doing. I was with another agency before Ford, and they didn’t give me feedback, so it’s been a really great experience in the short time that I’ve worked with them.

I’ve been working with a trainer and lost 30 pounds over the past six months. My goal was not necessarily to lose weight, but you want to be at consistent measurements. So, these are the things you like to eat, and this is your lifestyle — how can you stay physically the way you want? Learning how to be consistent is very important — consistency in lifestyle, eating, working out, just health in general. And getting sleep (having two jobs like I do now is not ideal for that).

I’m biracial so I looked different growing up as a young kid. I was always tan and people were like, why are you tan? Well, I’m half-black. My parents have always been very nurturing of the fact that being yourself is the most important thing. I wasn’t really trendy in grade school or high school. I had curly hair and I didn’t know how to wear it. I had a lot of funny pictures growing up. It took me awhile to grow into my body because didn’t look like every other teenage girl. I was very busty, too, and strong.

Now I don’t feel as different because when women get older, their bodies fill in a little bit more. But I have found that I love my body, I love who I am, I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. When I was younger I felt it would have been great to see more of a variety of body types. I’m not saying skinny people shouldn’t be in magazines, but I think it would be wonderful someday to see more of a variety. When I’m growing up, and I’m a size 10, and people think i’m obese when I’m almost making the Olympics?

I’ve refrained from reading posts on Twitter because I’m actually a nice person and people are so mean. Sometimes people are like, wow she needs to work out. I’m a size 16/18 because I’m a DDD in the chest. And I still fit into 31/32 jeans. We can be really hard on each other. I think it would be really nice to see other people being supportive of each other.

At the very smallest I was a size 10. I think if I was at a size 12/14 I don’t know if you would really notice that much, other than in my waist and my chest. My legs are not going anywhere. Even when I hear stuff about Crystal Renn losing weight, I’m like, let her be what she wants to be. She’s great for plus-size modeling, and if she wants to wear a swimsuit in Sports Illustrated, damn she looks good! She looks healthy. I think that’s another hard thing with trying to categorize people. Just let people be.

I currently live in Minnesota and have been working in medical supply sales for a little over five years. I make really good money, I get to work at one of the most prestigious facilities in the country — the Mayo Clinic. It’s kind of bittersweet because I’m leaving my job which is a really great job that I really enjoy. But at the same time, I’m like, I would kick myself forever if I didn’t try to do this. When Ford tells you that they want you to model for them, you do it.

Medical sales people are really competitive and quick learners. Our quotas are very tough, and it’s not an easy job, it’s not for everyone. It’s very stressful because if you have a number and if you don’t hit it you’re not going to have a job anymore. They like to hire people with that competitive background, so that’s how I got the job.

I was an athlete in college. I went to the University of Texas at Austin on a full athletic scholarship. I chose to do swimming but I did play basketball too in high school. I studied corporate communications, and took a lot of business classes; we learned a lot about management and how successful companies are run.

I work in the operating room, showing doctors how to use our products. I’m not really squeamish — the reality is that unless you’re in trauma surgeries it’s not that bloody. Trauma is the worst stuff you’re going to see. Working for sick children is also hard for me. But on the upside, I get to see patients get better, and I really do enjoy helping people and I enjoy my job because of that.

My brother lives the dream — he gets to do what he loves and gets paid millions of dollars to do it. He complains about it sometimes, and I’m like, be thankful that you get to do what you love! A lot of the time people get fearful that their fame is going to leave them. I don’t need to be the most famous person in the world if I can do what I love to do. If I can help even one other person achieve their dream, that is more important to me than being an icon.