Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex’s First Mother’s Day
How touching was the Mother’s Day photo Meghan and Harry shared on their @sussexroyal Instagram account today for Mother’s Day in many parts of the world, featuring baby Archie’s feet in front of a glorious bed of forget-me-not flowers, Princess Diana’s most beloved blooms.
The caption read, “Paying tribute to all mothers today – past, present, mothers-to-be, and those lost but forever remembered. We honor and celebrate each and every one of you,” followed by an excerpt from Nayyirah Waheed’s poem “Lands”: my mother was my first country; the first place i ever lived.
Meghan and Harry have been consistently considerate with what and how they share details of their lives with us. They feel in control and it’s empowering for us all.
I’ve learned a lot about boundaries myself this year thanks to therapy, so much so, every sphere of my life feels utterly transformed from relationships to work, and my own self-worth so watching how the Duke and Duchess have taken control of their own narrative, sharing only what they deem important about the birth and baby, on their own terms, has reaffirmed to me we’re all in charge of our story and our duty is to ourselves first.
The way Harry and Meghan ensured privacy on the intimate details they wanted to keep for themselves, is a lesson for us all in these over-sharing ‘social media times’.
Yes, Harry and Meghan are royals the tax payer (us) partly funds, but they have a human right to privacy, and a personal life to boot. We have no business in knowing every detail of the birth, the name of the hospital Archie was born in, whether her father will meet his grandson or the ins and outs of their every day life.
I hope the press will afford them the privacy they deserve and want during this important first year as new parents, we all know, royal or not, is a baptism of fire.
Hormones are hormones, whether you’ve got a team of staff and a glam squad at your finger tips, so please let’s not forget that. Meghan is a human just like you and I.
I didn’t recognise the body I was in post-birth, 3 stones larger than before, a bump still big enough for strangers to stop me in the street, buggy in tow, asking if I’d had my baby yet, or sometimes, if I was pregnant again already (really), and to top it off, the bombardment of new mums in movies and magazines, were only ever of Victoria Beckham types leaving hospital with their newborns in arms, bump-less in their skinny jeans.
It made me feel like I was failing, and absolutely served to exacerbate the pain I was in after suffering a traumatic birth.
I don’t begrudge the mums who naturally lose weight as soon as they give birth but when that’s all you see, you believe it to the norm, the default not the minority. It becomes pressurising and demoralising as many new mums feel forced to, ‘bounce back’ and conform when biology for most mean the opposite.
Many of us resemble Meghan two days on (who looked utterly stunning) and that moment she walked out, felt groundbreaking. There was such an overwhelming authenticity to how she looked and what she said and held herself which naturalised childbirth and motherhood in those three minutes which made history.
She didn’t try to hide or diminish her bump, in fact plumping for a cream dress by mixed heritage British designer, Grace Wales Bonner, which belted above the waist, accentuated her bump.
It states on Grace Wales Bonner’s website that she, “embraces a multiplicity of perspectives, proposing a distinct notion of luxury, via a hybrid of European and Afro-Atlantic approaches”. The perfect choice.
When it came to the photo call and the three minutes of questions, Meghan appeared besotted, understandably a little delicate (physically and emotionally), and looked a little like the woman I remember seeing in the mirror, 9 years ago, a new mum who was slowly learning to become a mother, with every sometimes scary, moment.
She was no doubt, a woman who could done without a press call on day two of being a mum, but she did it, and she did it her way.
A feminist mum wearing what she liked, showing up as a mum we all saw in ourselves that day. I cried a tear or two. Did you?