By Ken MacQueen - Wednesday, December 12, 2012 - 0 Comments
Kate and William have toured Canada and served as cheerleaders-in-chief at the Summer Olympics. Together they will face a hyper-scrutinized pregnancy.
The statement Monday from St. James’s Palace had all the hallmarks of a rush job: “Their royal highnesses the duke and duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to announce that the duchess of Cambridge is expecting a baby,” began the terse statement. After a nod to the happy relatives, it concluded with the meat of the matter: “The duchess was admitted this afternoon to King Edward VII Hospital in central London with Hyperemesis gravidarum. As the pregnancy is in its very early stages, her royal highness is expected to stay in hospital for several days and will require a period of rest thereafter.”
As any parent will tell you, children have minds of their own, and so it was the potential future king or queen of Britain, Canada and 14 other realms who set the agenda in a most unpleasant way. Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG), as most everyone now knows, is a severe form of nausea and vomiting, an amped-up morning sickness that must have made Kate’s weekend visit to her parents’ home in Bucklebury, Berkshire, a hellish experience. Protocol should have dictated that William’s granny, Queen Elizabeth II, would have been the first to know her third great-grandchild and heir was on the way. But even if the couple hadn’t chosen that weekend to share the news of the pregnancy, Kate’s parents, Carole and Michael Middleton, would have surmised it soon enough as their usually unflappable 30-year-old daughter made repeated dashes for the nearest bathroom. By Monday, her nausea was severe enough that a worried William was on the phone to doctors. That afternoon, he drove her into the city to King Edward VII, “London’s foremost private hospital.” He stayed with her until about 8:20 p.m. Monday, returning to the hospital Tuesday morning. Continue…
By Ken MacQueen - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 10:12 AM - 0 Comments
A controversial new book says her mental illness hurt her son and has even affected his relationship with Kate
On the day of the funeral of Diana, princess of Wales—a sunny Saturday in September 1997—there was one small item that broke a million hearts in a city, and a nation, already awash in grief. A bouquet of white freesias sat atop her coffin as it rode on a gun carriage to Westminster Abbey. Nestled in the flowers was an envelope with a single word—“MUMMY”—printed in a child’s hand. Walking behind were its authors, princes William, 15, and Harry, 12, accompanied by their father, Prince Charles, their grandfather, Prince Philip, and their embittered uncle, Charles Spencer, Diana’s brother. At the time, those of us covering the funeral, and millions more watching on London’s streets and on televisions around the world, wondered what these wounded young lads could possibly have said to make sense of the tragedy that befell their mother, and the circus of grief it spawned.
That note also touched a deep chord with Penny Junor, a veteran royal watcher and the author of the newly published Prince William: Born to be King, which manages to be both a sympathetic portrait of the future king and a controversial examination of an upbringing that was scarred by tumult, loss and Diana’s mental fragility. “I thought it was incredibly touching,” she said of the note. It was only through the wise intervention of Sandy Henney, Prince Charles’s press secretary at the time, that the boys’ farewell words to their mother were sealed in an envelope, protected from the reach of the hundreds of telephoto lenses lining the funeral route. “Their lives had been so intruded upon by the media,” Junor said in an interview with Maclean’s. “That would have been the end of their world if their little note to their mother had been picked up by those lenses.”
In fact, the privacy of William and Harry’s lives had been trammelled from birth. Long before their mother’s death, they endured the loss of loved ones who fell out of favour with their parents, and the rage, tears and public humiliation of the marriage breakup that left them caught between the warring camps of mother and father. “He would be superhuman if he didn’t have demons,” Junor writes of William. “But he keeps them to himself; he is one of the most intensely private people you could meet.”