Jess Cunningham introduces fifth baby as she reveals ‘profound Angel-like experience’ during pregnancy

She made quite the impression during her time on The Apprentice in 2016, but the biggest task now facing Jessica Cunningham isn’t in the boardroom – it’s being a busy mum of five!

When we meet Jess, who’s now a successful businesswoman and transformational coach, she exclusively introduces OK! VIP Club members to her gorgeous newborn son, her second child with partner Alex Daw.

Are you part of The OK! VIP Club? If not, why not? It’s free and gives you backstage access to stories like this, exclusive home tours, special discounts and so much more! All you need to do is pop your email address below! P.s. if you’re already seeing this article in full, congrats – you’re already on our guest list!

“Meet Dudley,” Jessica beams. “This is the happiest I’ve ever been in my life.”

Baby Dudley has plenty of attention from his big brother Digby, two, and his three sisters – Poppy, nine, Olive, eight, and six year old Hattie – who Jess had with her late partner, Alistair Eccles. While Jess chooses not to discuss the girls’ father, who died at the age of 35 in 2017, she’s more than happy to talk about all the good things in her life, including Dudley’s “relaxed” birth and her supportive array of celeb mates.

Here, Jess opens up about overcoming abuse, her regrets chasing fame, and feeling happier than ever with her not-so-little family of seven…

Congratulations on welcoming your little baby, Dudley. How did you decide on the name?

Alex came up with it. He chose both our boys’ names, Digby and Dudley. I loved how they sounded together.

How was the birth?

We had a homebirth and it was such an amazing experience. With everything that’s been going on over the past year, we weren’t sure about what the birth would be like at the hospital.

We heard horror stories about women not being able to have their partners in there, so we opted to do it at home.

Was this your first homebirth?

Yeah. It wasn’t as painful as the other births, it was a hell of a lot quicker and it was so much more relaxed! Right after Dudley was born we had a glass of champagne in bed to celebrate. It was lovely. I’ve not drank since 2019!

How was Alex as your birthing partner?

He was amazing! But the birthing pool was so much bigger than we expected, so we had to get about five pans on the stove to fill it!

We set the pool up around three weeks before our due date, but we didn’t anticipate how much water it would take. We got it to a certain level but the midwife said we needed more, so it was off to the pots and pans [laughs].

Where were all the kids during the labour?

When my contractions started to get strong, Alex took them to my sister’s, who is in our bubble.

I thought the girls would sleep, but they stayed up from 2.30 in the morning because they were so excited they were going to meet their brother or sister. They went to school after having around five hours of sleep.

You said you were convinced you were having a girl. Why?

I had the craziest experience! Just a few hours before I found out I was pregnant, I was really freaking out about the possibility of having another baby with everything that was going on.

I was scared about the kind of world I’d be bringing a child into. Then, all of a sudden, as I’m thinking this, a voice said to me, “It’s a girl!” Then I had this energy of pure love and reassurance all over my body.

It felt like an angel! I’ve never experienced anything like it, but it was completely profound. Then later that day I did the test and found out I was pregnant.

Were you happy he was actually a boy?

Ecstatic! It was surreal because I just wasn’t expecting it. It’s amazing because now Digby has a little brother. So they have that brother bond and all the girls have that sister bond.

Do you prefer not to find out the gender of your babies before they’re born?

I had my eldest, Poppy, with my ex partner and no, we didn’t find out, but he wanted to find out with Olive and Hattie. This time, Alex and I just didn’t want to know. It’s the only thing you can keep a surprise.

How did you find pregnancy fifth time around?

I do not like being pregnant. Everything changes for me. My body changes, my mindset and my energy change. In the last month I turn into this evil dragon witch where I know I’m being evil but I just can’t stop it. I know I’m traumatising my kids [laughs]. I don’t do pregnancy very well, especially towards the end when you’re so tired. You’re running around after the children so you’re drained. As soon as I had Dudley I literally felt like the evil woman who had possessed me had left. I feel calm and happy now.

What’s the household been like since he arrived?

Surprisingly calm! But the girls are at school every day and Digby goes to nursery three times a week. Dudley sleeps so much in the day, not so much at night-time though. We’re looking forward to him getting to around four months old, when his personality will start coming alive. That’s when things will get chaotic!

How do the children feel about their new baby brother?

Oh, they love him! They absolutely adore him. Because there’s four of them, every five minutes I have one of them asking if they can hold him.

How do you feel about being a mum-of-five?

It’s bonkers! I treated myself to a new car for my birthday [laughs]. If I’m going to have five kids I need to be looking quite stylish! It’s weird though – I feel like people judge me for having five children.

Why do you think that?

Because I’ve got a lot of children! I love the chaos. But when I do the school run I feel like I’ve got this entourage [laughs]. If one of the kids is a little bit naughty, I really feel like people are looking and thinking that I can’t cope. Sometimes I think they are right!

EXCLUSIVE TO OK! VIP CLUB

  • Inside Alex and Olivia Bowen's mansion
  • Craig Revel Horwood house tour
  • Social icon Lalalaletmeexplain's column

Would you ever seek any help?

No, I’m a real hands-on mum. I’m really protective over who takes care of them.

How’s Digby taking to being a big brother?

Absolutely fine. Because he’s got three sisters, he’s used to sharing his time anyway.

How are the girls feeling about being big sisters?

They are fantastic. All of them are such a help. I’ve just taught them how to unload the dishwasher, which they all hate, but they all get pocket money for doing it.

Do they all get on?

They either really love each other or they’re constantly arguing. I’ve had to introduce time-outs because the sibling rivalry drives me to the point of absolute insanity. When you take one child out of the equation, everything is so much calmer. It doesn’t matter who, it’s always calmer.

You’ve spoken in the past about your mental health problems growing up and particularly following the death of the girls’ father. How have you been in recent years?

Alright. But when that happened it made me really delve into myself and deal with things that had happened to me when I was younger that I had suppressed. That was the start of my journey to become a transformational coach.

What did you suppress?

I was abused when I was aged four to eight by a close family friend.

We’re so sorry to hear that…

I’d suppressed everything up until two weeks before I went on The Apprentice. Because I was under so much stress and pressure, all these memories started coming up. It was just horrific. Then, when Alistair passed away, everything came down on me like a ton of bricks.

I just had to work on myself. I had to work through what had happened to me and the kids. It was the biggest wake-up call ever.

What have you done to take care of your mental wellbeing since then?

With everything to do with your mental wellbeing, you have triggers that bring on certain emotions. These triggers are from past experiences that have emotional charge. Once you release the emotional charge from any past experience you’re no longer anxious. You don’t get depressed or sad because there’s no trigger there. So

I cleared so much emotional charge to deal with everything that had happened. Now I don’t really get anxious, whereas I was a very anxious person before. I don’t really have down days, whereas before I had massive down days.

Has Alex been hugely supportive of you throughout everything?

Yes, Alex is brilliant. He’s supported me through everything. He just wants to do the best for everyone.

Would you like to get married now?

I think we will end up getting married, but I don’t feel like we need that. I feel so secure, we’re on a very neutral ground.

Do you feel like your family is complete now or are more children on the cards?

Yes, my family is complete now! I feel sad knowing this is my last baby. One thing I really struggle with is having one-on-one time with each of the kids, and I really miss that. So I want to make sure I can find the quality time to have with them.

Are you proud of having a blended family?

Yeah! Having children with two different people, I felt very judged at first. But actually this is the happiest I’ve ever been in my life. I love our little family. There’s nothing I’d change about it.

Does it come with its ups and downs?

Sometimes, because I know the girls aren’t Alex’s children, I build things up in my head about his parenting. I wonder if it’s because the girls aren’t his, but he’s taking everything onboard. Sometimes it can be difficult but I think that’s because I worry about stuff. I love all five children the same and Alex does too, I know that. But then sometimes I wonder if he’s just saying it!

  • Jessica Cunningham announces she's pregnant with fifth child and says a voice told her 'it's a girl'

  • Apprentice star Jessica Cunningham gives birth to baby number five and reveals the adorable name

What’s your household like at the moment?

Messy [laughs]! I’ve got the cleaner coming. We’re in the process of decorating because we’re looking to sell the house at the end of the year. We’re hoping to move to a bigger place – we need more space! We’ve definitely outgrown our place.

I want to live more out in the country, with more land.

How did going on The Apprentice change your life?

The Apprentice was an amazing opportunity. But when I came out of the show, I chased the fame.

I think because of what I went through when I was younger, I wanted validation. But I should have focused on my business because I lost who I was. The TV world is very fickle and it messed with my mind. You get rejected a lot and I blamed myself. But now I feel like me again. I feel like sound-of-mind Jess! Focusing on my business and my kids makes me far happier than trying to get on some TV show. Everyone thinks when you’ve been on The Apprentice you’re minted, but there’s no longevity and not a lot of money in TV unless you’re really well established.

You also went on Celebrity Big Brother. How do you feel when you look back on your time on the show?

[Laughs] I try not to mention it!

I feel sad when I look back on that because I know what I was going through when I was in there. I had a lot of time to think and I was thinking about what had happened to me when I was little. Also, when you go on Big Brother they want you to be and act a certain way. I didn’t really enjoy it.

You’ve taken up a career as a business and transformational coach, and you also practise mediumship! What’s that about?

I turned to coaching two years ago and it completely changed my life. It was the same time I discovered I was able to connect to spirit, and it’s the most magical gift. I started Conscious Female Entrepreneurs which combines the two – spirituality and business! I’ve worked with Andrea McLean and Leanne Brown from The Real Housewives Of Cheshire. I had amazing shifts with Andrea!

You’re very well-connected now with all your showbiz pals…

Oh yeah! Christine McGuinness is another one. She’s such a fabulous and wonderful woman. We talk all the time on WhatsApp. And Helen Flanagan shared a video of me doing a crazy dance when I was pregnant – we went to the same school together. She’s so sweet. I’m lucky to have a lot of brilliant people in my life.

Thank you for signing-up as an OK! VIP member!

Source: Read Full Article