P Posted by Sandra on June 21 2015 1 Comment McBusted, McFLY, News, Photo gallery update

Read below Tom’s interview with Fabulous Magazine that is featured on the father’s day issue and also check the photoshoot in our gallery and the behind the scenes video below.


FUNNY how such a simple, everyday moment can prove so life-affirming. Since Tom Fletcher uploaded a YouTube video a few weeks ago of toddler son Buzz strapped to his back, erupting into giggles at his daddy blowing the fluffy head of a dandelion, it’s been shared around the world.

He reckons as many as 20 million people have viewed it on various websites, and tells us it’s been featured on The Today Show in America and shared online by Zooey Deschanel and Ryan Seacrest. It’s two minutes and seven seconds of pure, unadulterated joy.

“Ah, I watch it a lot myself!” says Tom. “I show it to Buzz and he gets all embarrassed, which is really sweet. We were out on a walk, I just picked a dandelion, blew it, and he cracked up laughing. I knew I had to film it to show Gi [Tom’s wife], but I didn’t know if he’d do it again. But he found it hilarious over and over. He’s such a giggly kid, he laughs at everything.”

A glance at the hundreds of videos on Tom’s phone proves the point – Buzz is the jolliest of babies, with the most infectious of chuckles. In one film where he’s nappy-free, he becomes so hysterical that he has an “accident” on the floor.

But parenthood hasn’t all been a barrel of laughs. After 12 years on the road with McFly, Tom thought he knew what it was like to function on very little sleep. And then Buzz bounced on to the scene in March 2014, and everything changed.

“It’s just insane,” he says. “The tiredness is like nothing else. You think you’re prepared – we read as many books as we could and spoke to friends and family who are parents, went to all the [antenatal] classes – but until you’re living it, you have no idea what it’s going to be like. It’s the sheer fatigue, and the mix of emotions is just overwhelming at times.”

Tom, 29, who was voted last year’s Marvel Celebrity Dad Of The Year, pulls no punches. The last 15 months have been the most exhilarating, emotional and challenging of his life. Together, he and wife Giovanna, 30, have battled through the sleepless nights and blurry days and emerged with their marriage (and sanity) intact.

“It’s been the most real thing I’ve ever experienced. This sudden realisation that you’re completely responsible for another human being and you don’t really know what you’re doing. It’s chaotic and stressful and you think you know what tired feels like, but you really don’t,” he says.

“And then you realise that everything else you’ve done up to this point really isn’t important at all. I take things less seriously. I don’t let the little things bother me any more because this is what life is actually about.

“You’re seeing a human grow. I’ve never experienced the passing of time like that. I can’t remember what life was like before he was born.”

Author Giovanna’s blog was very honest – movingly so – about just how difficult she found the first month. She wrote about the exhaustion, the weight of responsibility, her painful physical recovery and her struggle (and eventual success) at getting breastfeeding established, all at the same time as being gripped by an all-consuming love for Buzz and a need to protect him. Tom remembers his own feelings of powerlessness as he tried to support his wife through that tough time.

“As a dad, you do feel quite helpless at first. Gi wasn’t doing great. She wasn’t prepared for what [childbirth] can do to a woman’s body, plus she was breastfeeding, so all of that was on her. So I guess my main role was looking after her.

“I could change nappies, make sure the shopping was in and that the house was OK and nothing was going to stress her out so she could get on with doing what mums need to do. It’s only after the first six months that it really becomes fun for dads.”

Buzz took them both by surprise, arriving more than two weeks early after Giovanna’s waters broke at McFly’s Danny Jones’ 28th birthday in a London restaurant.

Impressively, they calmly finished their steaks, but skipped dessert (“very unlike us”) in favour of hot-footing it to the hospital. But Giovanna was advised to go home and wait until her contractions were closer together.

“We were up all night,” says Tom. “When we went back to hospital the next morning, she was 6cm dilated. Buzz was born at 7pm that evening.

“It was so exciting, but I’ve never felt like that in my life. In 48 hours we’d probably had about two hours’ sleep and I almost wanted to ask for help! The midwives would visit Gi, who looked amazing, glowing and totally in love with Buzz, and I was like this dead person on the sofa.

“I almost felt I shouldn’t be responsible for holding him because I might just collapse with exhaustion.”

And so it began. The relentlessness that no one and nothing can prepare you for.

“He went straight to Gi when he was born,” adds Tom. “We didn’t know if we were having a boy or a girl and we almost forgot to ask. We were just relieved everything had gone smoothly. It was such an unbelievable moment trying to process what had just happened and that your life has instantly changed.

“There were tears. I was a mess, actually. I remember it all really clearly. And then my next responsibility was to control the grandparents, who managed to break their way in!”

Giovanna and Tom met as teenagers at the Sylvia Young Theatre School and have been together for 12 years. They married in 2012, and Tom says the time felt absolutely right to start a family.

“We’ve shared a lot of ups and downs through our teens, so we were solid as a couple. We’d been in our house for eight years and were just really ready for Buzz to take over our lives.

“Neither of us particularly like going out partying or have crazy social lives, so it wasn’t going to drastically alter our lifestyle. I wouldn’t go to the pub with my mates or to the football, so I don’t have any of that stuff to miss. It’s actually really good that I was boring with no friends!”

The closeness Tom and Giovanna share is clear from both the affection with which he talks about her and the collection of videos documenting the milestones in their relationship. The time-lapse film that shows the changing shape of Giovanna’s pregnancy is particularly poignant and has over 11 million views on YouTube.

Although it can be difficult to make time for each other, they have regular date nights, even if it’s just a home-cooked meal they get dressed up for. But Tom says the dynamics of their relationship are unchanged.

“It’s just confirmed what I already knew about Gi. She’s got all the qualities I knew were going to make her a great mother, so to see it being put into practice is amazing. She’s a very strong woman and it’s incredible to see her become a mum.”

He laughs as he admits that most of his conversations these days revolve around sleep (Buzz normally wakes twice during the night and ends up in-between Mum and Dad at around 2am with a satisfied grin on his face) and nappies (a “hideous” one in a restaurant on a recent holiday to California ended up with poor Giovanna covered in the contents).

“That’s pretty much all I talk about,” he says. I’ve just had lunch with Doug [Poynter, 27, McFly band mate] and I was showing him videos of Buzz doing his bag of tricks like pointing to his nose and doing animal noises. Doug probably doesn’t care, but as a parent you’re just so proud all the time.”

One of the things he relishes is the “dad stuff” he gets to do with Buzz – he’s often the only father in swimming and baby sign class.

“Just me and a load of mums!” he says. “But I love that one-to-one time we have and I can’t wait to introduce him to Star Wars! I really hope no one spoils the Darth Vader twist for him…”

Previously, Tom has been open about his bipolar and eating disorder, and says he did wonder if the pressure of parenthood would act as a trigger for a relapse.

“It did cross my mind, but I feel like I dealt with that a few years ago and had it under control before we were even thinking about kids. I think it’s almost helped because you need to be of sound mind and on top of things to look after a baby. I was very settled before all this.”

He had been worried, though, that becoming a dad might dampen his career ambitions. But after 12 years of McFly, two with super-group McBusted, six albums, 19 Top 10 singles and seven No.1s, Tom is even hungrier.

“I was mentally preparing myself for my ambition to change when I became a dad. But it’s actually made me more so because I realised I’m doing all this for Buzz.”

McBusted have gigs and promos which will take them up to Christmas, and after that it’s likely that McFly will start up again. “McBusted was an opportunity to have fun without knowing where it would take us, but McFly is for life. McBusted has been amazing fun, but it’s not where our passion is. McFly is more than a band, we live and breathe it. We want to make album number six.”

And maybe have time for more babies at some point? Tom grins. “Both of us want more kids, but you’ll just have to wait and see.”

And when the next baby Fletcher comes along, Tom and Giovanna will have the advantage of knowing what to expect.

“There’s light at the end of every tunnel,” Tom says. “It’s easy to get snowed under, but a week later you look back and it’s changed again. It gets better all the time.”



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