Michelle Obama starred on the cover of December’s issue of Vogue magazine, and looked incredible for her Vogue photoshoot done by portrait photographer to the stars, Anne Leibovitz. In an interview with the magazine, the First Lady opened up about living in the White House for the last eight years.

The mother-of-two spoke about the interviewer on her mixed feelings about leaving in January. She said: “Looking out on the South Lawn and the Washington Monument and it had just rained and the grass was really green and everything popped a little bit more. It’s so beautiful. And for that moment I thought, ‘I’m going to miss waking up to this, having access to this anytime I want.

“But on the flip side… it’s time. I think our democracy has it exactly right: two terms, eight years. It’s enough. Because it’s important to have one foot in reality when you have access to this kind of power. The nature of living in the White House is isolating… When you’re not engaged in the day-to-day struggles that everybody feels, you slowly start losing touch. And I think it’s important for the people in the White House to have a finger on the pulse.”

This is Michelle’s third Vogue cover shoot, having appeared on the cover of the magazine in 2009 and again in 2012. In the photoshoot, the 52-year-old wore a selection of stunning outfits as she posed around the White House, including a floor length black gown, a flowing white dress, and a black pencil skirt and jacket.

Michelle’s husband President Barack Obama spoke about his wife for the interview in an email, in which he wrote: “Michelle never asked to be First Lady. Like a lot of political spouses, the role was thrust upon her.

“But I always knew she’d be incredible at it, and put her own unique stamp on the job. That’s because who you see is who she is—the brilliant, funny, generous woman who, for whatever reason, agreed to marry me. I think people gravitate to her because they see themselves in her—a dedicated mom, a good friend, and someone who’s not afraid to poke a little fun at herself from time to time.”
-Hello Magazine