The singer and author Ellie Goulding took refuge in Gloucestershire, just outside London, during the pandemic. “I grew up in the countryside,” she says. “Moving here made me realize how crazy the last 10 years of my life have been. I realized everything that I have conquered or saved up: awards, furniture … Taking things out of the boxes was like being on a real roller coaster. I also found my old school books. Since I started my career, this is the first place I’ve settled in. “
She and her husband, the art dealer Gaspare Jopling, they have created their safe nest here. “We haven’t seen anyone,” he says. “We were good enough not to break the rules because we want it to be over as quickly as possible. There is a kind of lockdown in the UK. It has certainly been a bizarre year, also and above all because of what is happening to me right now.”
To begin, Ellie Goulding just released an album – Brightest Blue came out in July 2020 – and is about to publish a book on wellness (Fitter. Calmer. Stronger., Out in September). But that’s not what Goulding is referring to. The big news is the fact that she is 30 weeks pregnant with her first child. “You are the first person I speak to!” admits. “I haven’t been photographed yet, so …”
The last time Goulding made a major public appearance was at the V&A Museum in August. “We made that one appearance. I was pregnant and I still had no idea, “she says.” That was around the time Caspar and I went to London for a short time when we were allowed to, and it was basically there when we found out we were expecting a baby. It was crazy because it was our first anniversary. It wasn’t in the plans. The thought of getting pregnant didn’t seem like it could be a reality. But it made me feel so human. I would like to use a better word than “feminine”, I have curves that I have never had before. I’m having fun. My husband is enjoying himself. “
When Goulding came to terms with the fact that she was pregnant right in the middle of a pandemic, the changes were both fast and slow. “It happens very quickly, and at first you almost don’t believe it,” he reveals. “You’re still eating the same things, you look the same. In fact for a while I almost denied it was possible. I was in great shape.”
Goulding’s book, Fitter. Calmer. Stronger. tells how activity and movement can make us feel good and improve our quality of life, so fitness was first for her. But as the pregnancy progressed, everything she had talked about suddenly seemed to have flown out the window. “I started to have a completely different body and a different energy, I couldn’t go through it all together!” She says.
“I actually went from being pleased with how healthy my salads and nut and seed breakfasts were, to just wanting a McDonalds,” she laughs. “And I was a little bit terrified, suddenly I wanted all the things that hurt! What this kid did when he took over my body was unconsciously declare me, hell no, I don’t want broccoli, spinach, cabbage! Only sugar and carbohydrates “.
When it comes to the emotional experience of being pregnant at a time like this, Goulding says that for her it coincided with a deep reflection on herself and a feeling of further isolation. “You have your partner and you have your friends, but in a pandemic you can feel particularly lonely,” Goulding explains. “Because it wasn’t something I had planned right now, and I know it can be a lonely journey because of what’s going on. I think that’s the reason I’ve kept everything a secret and been very protective. I felt a tiredness That I had never tried before. I feel like it’s taboo to talk about pregnancy as a challenge. It’s not always peaceful and super fantastic. Although I’m not saying every second of this pregnancy has been unhappy. Yet it’s not always easy . But now I have incredible respect for every woman who has children. “
As for the baby’s gender announcement, Goulding decides not to reveal it. “It’s not relevant to me,” he says. “We found that out of a scan. But it’s not important. We just wanted a healthy baby and nothing else. Instinctively, gender revelation is not for me. “
It also seems that Goulding has deeply understood that every woman has her own pregnancy and a different childbirth experience .. “I never wanted to hear the stories of other women!” He says. “I’m trying to live what happens to me to the full without worrying [troppo] of the future because every single day is different. It’s nice to think about kindergarten and the kind of child I will have, but personally I prefer to face everything moment by moment, being very understanding also towards what I feel day after day “
Goulding is ready to experience something completely new and agrees to immerse herself in the present; think it’s more productive than worrying about what exactly the future will look like. “I’m thrilled to be a mother, but I want to make sure I keep working,” she adds. “I can’t wait to get back on tour. I’ve been in the studio most days and I’m thrilled with the challenge. It will be a totally new experience “.
Hair: Nick Latham
Makeup: Lucy Wearing
This article was originally published on Vogue.com