pregnancy

"This is exactly what Meghan Markle's life will be like after giving birth. It ain't pretty."

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I remember those early weeks when I had my baby.

The long sleepless nights trying to settle a crying baby, my breasts milk engorged to the point where I looked like I was auditioning for a role on Baywatch, but ended up landing one on Babywatch instead.

I once answered the door to a guy delivering a package with both my boobs out. He looked at me and said ‘you just have to sign’. I breast fed him anyway. His hair grew back and now he’s manager of the local post office. You see breast really is best.

What are those first days going to be like for Meghan Markle? How does a new mum survive that level of public scrutiny? Any woman who’s had a vaginal birth remembers the indignity of the giant maternity pad. I remember looking at it and seriously rethinking the whole childbirth thing. It was so big I could have used it as a toboggan. I had no idea that I’d be burning through one every hour. (I put witch hazel in mine and popped them in the freezer so they doubled as an icepack).

Royal kids are just like normal kids. Post continues after video. 

Your vagina feels like it went a few rounds in a cage fight, sometimes you’ve got stitches, you can barely walk and you’re terrified to poop in case your internal organs fall out. I limped to the couch and collapsed. Apart from a few family snaps where I have the traditional new mum look of “horrendous and happy”, no one was getting up in my grill.

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In fact many women who have new babies put a ban on anyone coming to see them for a few weeks so they can have some family time and sort out how to manage the new mum thing.

I didn’t have to put on a nice frock, get hair and make up done and wave to people!

How is Meghan going to control her boobs? Those first few months are terrifying. It’s like living with two unpredictable milk canons. Anything sets you off. Looking at your baby. Spurt. Looking at a photo of your baby. Leak. Hearing someone else’s baby. Dribble. It’s natural, but it’s embarrassing. And the whole world will want to see her tidy lactation fail.

Being a Princess makes the new baby experience challenging, because there are all these unrealistic expectation of ‘perfection’ that go with ‘Princess’ – and we all know that when it comes to being a new mum with a first baby you just have to let go of any idea that it’s going to be like in the fairytales. Will your baby sleep? Probably not. Probably not with all those corgis barking all through the night. And royal babies, they poop too.

I wonder if Queen Liz is cool with Megsie dossing down with her mobile baby changing sarong and just changing the new bubs wherever she is. Or is it like at a shopping centre where she’ll be ushered off to a ‘parent’s room’ – those hideous places next to the public toilet where you are expected to change AND feed your baby.

And what about where Meghan breastfeeds? Can she lop a tit out at the breakfast table. Will Phil choke on his marmalade toast? Will there be a ‘tut tut’ for her ‘tit tit’?

It’s very isolating for a new mum when feeding her baby requires some sort of moral based exile from civilisation.

And imagine those long nights walking those lonely Palace halls! Those nights of singing and jiggling to get that baby to sleep. Those nights when I played Paul Kelly’s Foggy Highway 320 times. I can’t listen to that album now without remembering those desperate hours alone in the dark. Well not exactly alone. Paul was there.

And what if Meghan decides to go for attachment parenting? Will the world cope if she wears a baby sling? It’s hard to look stylish when you have to start dressing to match your pram. What if she wants to co-sleep? You don’t want a baby rolling out of bed onto the marble floor. That’s what I imagine they have. Marble.

One of the things that kept me sane in the first few months of having a baby was going to mum’s group. That’s when a bunch of mums with new bubs get together and have mind numbing boring conversations about babies. About pooing. About sleeping. About what laundry detergent you use.

I doubt Meghan gets to do the laundry. How is she going to connect? She’ll never have the support and the judgement of the mum pack. Everything she’ll do will be scrutinised, it will be criticised and silly stories will come out saying something like ‘Meghan to bury placenta in Palace garden… will corgis dig it up?’

Having a baby is an amazing, magical and life changing time. There’s a primal transition from girl to mother and no one should have to do this with the world watching on…just waiting for a sneak peek, a glimpse at a tired and nervous Meghan Markle’s new mum Fails. I hope she continues her ‘real’ approach to motherhood and comes out in those first few Palace photos in trackies and a dressing gown.

That would be my kind of Princess.

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