08/25/2010 08:22 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Why Elin Nordegren Is the Role Model of All Time for Handling a Hyper-Public Divorce

Could you have withstood the heartbreaking revelations of your husband's infidelities, the constant presence of the paparazzi, and the outspoken public opinions of multiple mistresses, with the calm fortitude of Elin Nordegren?

I think it's safe to say that few of us could have conducted ourselves with the grace under pressure that Tiger's now-former wife did. And only now after the finalization of her divorce on Aug. 23 has she spoken out in a cover-story interview with PEOPLE magazine.

Aside from the night of Nov. 27, 2009, when Elin tore out of her home after Tiger crashed the family suburban, Elin has never once been seen publicly agitated, and now she's finally spoken out with honesty and maturity about how her "whole world" fell apart.

Instead, the 30-year-old blond beauty held her head high for months as busty babe after busty babe came forward with sordid tales of wild sex with her now ex.

Wouldn't you have stayed in bed... permanently, with the covers over your head? I would have. But not Elin. While Publicity Attorney Gloria Allred held press conferences on behalf of Tiger's "hard done by" mistresses, Elin proudly went about her daily life, caring for her two babies Sam, 2, and Charlie, 1.

Despite the presence of the press, she dropped Sam at nursery school and ballet classes, took both children to play dates and birthday parties, and was even spotted wheeling them on their red wagon through the street near their home in Windermere, Fla. Focusing on her two young children was, she now admits, what got her through the past nine devastating months.

Elin reveals now what we all guessed, that she did undergo the most torturous roller coaster of emotions: shock, betrayal, heartache, embarrassment, loneliness, humiliation, anger and hurt. She must have felt like she'd been kicked in the stomach by the man she had loved -- the father of her children, no less.