The Bearded Iris

A Recalcitrant Wife and Mother Tells All

The royal birth vs. my first birth

Hear ye, hear ye! The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge welcomed their first child, a son, on Monday afternoon in London!

The royal birth vs. my first birth…so many similarities, I should probably wear a tiara all the time.

Ah, isn’t she lovely?

Like so many others, I was absolutely glued to the TV and Twitter earlier this week anxiously awaiting the exciting news of the new little royal heir. And clearly, I wasn’t alone. Based on the news coverage, you would think this was the first baby ever born in the history of the world.

Can you blame us, soaking up the media drippings like thirsty sponges. This is no ordinary birth story. This is a real life fairy tale.

But actually, even though lovely Duchess Kate has just given birth with the utmost of pomp and circumstance to a child who is third in line for the British throne, her birthing experience was remarkably similar to mine.

For instance: we both had boys.

Both of our boys were born in hospitals, in the late afternoon.

Kate’s baby was 8 lb., 6 ounces; mine was 8 lb., 5 ounces.

We both had matriarchal grandmothers with questionable taste in hats eagerly awaiting the news.

We both had doting husbands by our sides. Although, in my case, my husband was actually lying by my side because he had thrown out his back playing 36 holes of golf with his buddies just weeks before my due date and was in too much pain to stand up for very long. (Motherfucker.)

We both pushed our little princes out of our royal vajewelry boxes and earned souvenir peri bottles and ice-pack-filled stretchy mesh undies.

Both of our sons have official titles. Kate’s son shall be called “His Royal Highness Prince of Cambridge;” my son was dubbed “Sir Cone Head of the Epidurally Paralyzed and Sluggishly Low Muscle Toned Birth Canal.”

We both had easels displayed shortly after our births to share critical information with the public. Kate’s was placed on the sidewalk and announced that she “was safely delivered of a son;” mine was placed outside of my hospital room and announced “WARNING: Extreme Post-Partum Sensory Disorder! Take extra precautions and avoid all physical contact. Patient requests that hospital staff remove all traces of perfume, scented body lotions, and hummus breath before entering.”

Both Kate and I enjoyed a celebratory 41-gun salute. Kate’s was performed by the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery in Green Park; mine was performed by my flatulent father-in-law’s pants every time he bent down to admire his newest grandchild.

And lastly, we both had a uniformed man outside shouting after the birth. Kate’s was a royalist dressed as the town crier. Mine was a hospital custodian shouting, “WE’RE GOING TO NEED HAZMAT SUITS AND EXTRA BLEACH…APPARENTLY SHE ATE SAUSAGE AND PEPPERS YESTERDAY.”

Originally published In the Powder Room


  1. I ripped my husband’s shirt and tried to tear his head off while I was in labor after he calmly said, “Just breathe through it Honey, and it won’t hurt as much…” That was the Biggest. Lie. Ever.

  2. Ohmygod the MESH UNDIES.

    I’d almost managed to forget them.
    Perish the thought.

  3. Mesh Undies and Biggest Maxi Pad Ever!! I had my husband video tape the ensemble so we could laugh at it later. Hahaha! After our third I tried to lift a couple pair of the mesh undies, they provide great support after a c-section.

  4. I’ve been reading all my friends’ Blogher posts and you’re pretty much their fave!! Which really isn’t surprising at all!

  5. They gave me this green glop to drink to prevent me from vomiting. So what did I do? I vomited all over my husband. Turned my head and let him have it Linda Blair style. Poor guy.

  6. Mesh panties lol…I’m so glad they still have those things. At first I was all, “You have got to be kidding…I have to wear those?” but a week later, sleep deprived and full of postpartum craziness, I was all “What?!?! I’m out of mesh panties – call the hospital I need more! Can these be washed and reused? Does the inside out rule apply to these things?” Awww…the newborn days.

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