Apparently, Meghan Markle “owes” the world a public appearance with her newborn the very second she delivers the placenta.
Call us crazy, but here at Mum Central, we think new mums don’t owe anyone squat. Not even a coherent sentence. Definitely not a parade.
With baby due any day now, the Palace has issued a press release to explain Markle’s controversial decision not to display the new arrival on the hospital steps as per tradition. Instead, the public will be told when she goes into labour and presented with a picture when Baby Sussex arrives.
“Their Royal Highnesses have taken a personal decision to keep the plans around the arrival of their baby private,” the press release said.
“The Duke and Duchess look forward to sharing the exciting news with everyone once they have had an opportunity to celebrate privately as a new family.”
Remember that “friend” who announced your baby’s arrival on Facebook before you were even stitched up? Markle isn’t having any of that. She’d like to take a moment or two to breathe her newborn in before handing the little one over to the world. How. Dare. She?
The move has angered a lot of people, including Sky News commentator Carole Malone.
“Meghan Markle OWES Britons a public appearance with Royal baby,” Ms Malone said.
“This is an unprecedented slap in the face for those legions of decent ordinary people who love the Royal Family and who think of the Royal birth as a joyful national celebration.”
The Sun columnist Lauren Clark was equally scathing of the decision to keep birth details private claiming it “has rightly angered a nation”.
“We never thought that they were going to deny us the enjoyment of details of the birthing plan we have mused for so many months,” Clark said.
Here’s what you need to know about Markle’s birthing plan Clark: whatever she decides to volunteer. Otherwise, none of your business.
We’re pretty sure Markle can handle these haters, but here at Mum Central, we like to support new mums, not criticise their every move. So, a letter to Megs, from all of us who want to encourage her to keep doing it her way.
Everyone has an opinion. When you become a mother, everyone thinks you want to know theirs.
The key to dealing with unsolicited advice is to smile and nod and then do whatever seems right to you. Exactly like you’ve been doing. (And then you will lay awake at 3 am second guessing yourself. Welcome to motherhood, where mother knows best, but sometimes she takes a little convincing.)
If anyone else received stitches in their nether regions in an effort to bring Baby Sussex into the world, perhaps they get a small say. Otherwise, this is your show Megs. (Harry will likely have some input and, in the early days at least, the above advice about smiling and nodding is relevant there).
It matters not whether the baby was free-birthed in the river, hypno-birthed, sliced out, removed with forceps or chainsawed to freedom (you might want to apply an ice pack for that). Nor is it relevant whether you were drug-free, comatose or something in-between, none of it matters. If you have a healthy mini Markle, that is miraculous enough, and that is all we need to know. When you are ready.
We feel it is our duty though to warn you that the first few months can be brutal. Some babies sleep, some don’t. Both types are normal, don’t let anyone convince you otherwise. The main point is, if you get a sleeper, you’ve got to be kind to the other mums who are likely facing each day feeling like they drank a litre of bleach last night and are now midway through the Boston marathon sweating milk.
Do not turn up to Royal mum’s group and announce that your bubba sleeps 7 to 7 by day 7. It’s that kind of showing off that’ll get you a bad name. We’re actually really glad you’ve decided not to appear to the world in your pre-baby body on the ridiculousness that is Day Three.
Perhaps in your line of work, wearing maternity jeans for the next four years is not an option, but you should consider it for the sake of the greater good. If you truly want to do your bit for mothers worldwide, arrive at a press conference with a bit of baby vomit on your shoulder and some eye bags (draw them in if you have to).
Anyhow, best of luck with it all. Whether you bottle feed, breastfeed, use cloth or disposable nappies, co-sleep or put your baby out in the shed, it’s yours (and occasionally Harry’s) decision. No-one else’s.
Bagging a prince, living in a castle, winning the genetic lottery, owning a never-ending walk-in-wardrobe? None of that compares to the fairytale that is motherhood Megs. Cherish that baby, they grow so fast (and all the other clichés you may roll your eyes at but end up as truth).
You do you, and we’ll meet Baby Sussex whenever you are ready. Not a moment before.
Love Mum Central xx
PS: We’ve heard a rumour that Baby Sussex might be named after one of the grandmothers – Diana or Doria. Go with whatever you want, but have you considered Dora? Dora the Royal Explorer sounds perfect.