Week Twenty Six: Devastating News From Meghan Markle & Prince Harry, Plus, It's One Month Until Christmas - Put Your Festive Film IQ to the Test!
Meghan Markle has revealed she experienced a devastating miscarriage earlier this year
Royal Watch: Devastating news from Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
Meghan Markle has revealed she suffered a miscarriage this year, writing about the “unbearable grief” she and Prince Harry have experienced in an open letter to the New York Times.
The very candid article tells of how the pair lost their second child in July and the immense heartache they have felt in the months since.
Meghan (39) starts the essay by writing:
"It was a July morning that began as ordinarily as any other day: Make breakfast. Feed the dogs. Take vitamins. Find that missing sock. Pick up the rogue crayon that rolled under the table. Throw my hair in a ponytail before getting my son from his crib.
"After changing his diaper, I felt a sharp cramp. I dropped to the floor with him in my arms, humming a lullaby to keep us both calm, the cheerful tune a stark contrast to my sense that something was not right.
"I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second.
"Hours later, I lay in a hospital bed, holding my husband's hand. I felt the clamminess of his palm and kissed his knuckles, wet from both our tears. Staring at the cold white walls, my eyes glazed over. I tried to imagine how we'd heal.”
Meghan then goes on to reflect back on the couple’s time in South Africa for a long royal tour in 2019. Both of them were utterly exhausted from an extensive tour, just months after they welcomed their first child. Meghan was breastfeeding their son Archie who was born in March last year. The duchess says she was trying to put on brave face, while their every move was captured by photographers and international press.
It was at this same time that Prince Harry and Meghan were also joined by journalist Tom Bradley who was making a documentary, Harry & Meghan: An African Journey. During the interview, one evening Tom asked Meghan on camera, “Are you okay?” and her answer became headline news.
“Thank you for asking,” she said. “Not many people have asked if I’m okay.”
(Meghan and Harry, shortly after arriving in South Africa in 2019)
Reflecting on that moment in her New York Times essay, Meghan says, “I answered him honestly, not knowing that what I said would resonate with so many - new moms and older ones, and anyone who had, in their own way, been silently suffering. My off-the-cuff reply seemed to give people permission to speak their truth. But it wasn't responding honestly that helped me most, it was the question itself.”
"Sitting in a hospital bed, watching my husband's heart break as he tried to hold the shattered pieces of mine, I realised that the only way to begin to heal is to first ask, 'Are you Okay?'"
News that Meghan had been pregnant with the couple’s second child came as a surprise to many, although rumours had begun to swirl in recent months after Meghan’s lawyers pushed to have her court case pushed back by nine months due to a personal matter.
Sadly, Meghan and Harry are certainly not alone in their heartbreak – a staggering one in every four pregnancies end in a loss. It’s a pain that many other royals know, only too well.
Zara Tindall was one of the first royals to speak publicly about experiencing a miscarriage in 2016. "For me, the worst bit was that we had to tell everyone - everyone knew," she said at the time. "I had to go through having the baby because it was so far along. I then had another miscarriage really early on."
Zara went on to have a second miscarriage, but didn’t reveal the news until some time later, saying it had been “too raw” to share at the time. "You need to go through a period where you don't talk about it because it's too raw, but, as with everything, time's a great healer," she said.
Zara and her husband Mike Tindall now have two daughters, Mia and Lena.
But a decade earlier Sophie, Countess of Wessex and Prince Edward spoke of their pain when Sophie’s first pregnancy ended in heartbreak. At 37, Sophie had a life-threatening ectopic pregnancy, requiring her to be airlifted to hospital for emergency surgery after she collapsed at the couple’s home.
As Sophie recovered in hospital, Prince Edward stepped outside to speak to reporters about the deeply “traumatic” experience.
“It’s obviously a very traumatic time and my wife has.. it’s quite the most painful thing that anyone can undergo. It’s a pretty traumatic experience. As the pain reduces, so the relief will increase.”
Later Sophie said, I'm obviously very sad – but it was just not meant to be. But there will be other chances.”
The couple now also have two children, Lady Louise and James, Viscount Severn.
Quiz: How well do you know these classic Christmas films?
It’s just one month until the big day! And now, it’s time to test how much attention you were paying during these hit festive films!
Arnold Schwarzenegger starred in comedy film where he was pitted against his toughest opponent yet: the Christmas shopping season. His goal was to get the toy his son (and every other child on the planet) wanted under the Christmas tree. What was the name of the film?
Always a favourite – It’s a Wonderful Life, is set in which fictional town: Hallmark Falls, Beauty Falls or Bedford Falls
In the rom-com Christmas film, The Holiday, who does Kate Winslet swap houses with?
Who is put on trial in Miracle on 34th Street?
Tim Allen plays an overworked single dad, who accidentally inherits the job of Santa Claus after the original jolly man falls from his roof on Christmas Eve. In the delightful film, cleverly named The Santa Clause, what was Scott’s original job: Lawyer, Advertising Executive or Chef?
Which actor lends his voice to the conductor (and six characters in total!!) in The Polar Express?
In Home Alone, Macaulay Culkin plays Kevin, a young boy who is left at home by mistake at Christmas, when his family leave for a holiday without him. What city did his family head to for the holiday?
In Love, Actually, Emma Thompson plays sister to which actor?
Bing Crosby’s hit song, White Christmas, features in the film of the very same name. But, it wasn’t written specifically for the film, and actually appeared in another Bing Crosby film beforehand. What was that film: High Society, Holiday Inn or Little Boy Lost?
Which Christmas film stars Sarah Jessica Parker, Diane Keaton, Dermot Mulroney, Claire Danes, Rachel McAdams and Luke Wilson?
Make sure you keep an eye on your email inbox for the next newsletter, which will have all the answers to the Christmas Quiz, and more! Until then, we hope you have a lovely, restful weekend.
Alice, Kelly & Nici