Off to school!
Sad Kate’s tears for her son
It was an historic royal event and a precious family milestone as the future king, Prince George, started his first day at school.
The newly pregnant Duchess of Cambridge, also mum to Princess Charlotte, two, was determined to be there as her little man
walked through the gates of Thomas’s Battersea, despite her acute morning sickness. Alas, it was not to be.
Although Kate had spent the previous few days in bed, cancelling two official engagements and doing her best to ward off the worst of the hyperemesis gravidarum that also blighted her first two pregnancies, on the morning of her four-year-old boy’s big day, the teary royal realised she was simply too unwell for the traditional first school run.
A Kensington Palace insider tells Woman’s Day, “Kate was very poorly and was cursing her luck that it should happen just when she wanted to be there for George. It was such a landmark moment in his life that she didn’t want to miss it for the world, but at the last minute, Kate realised there was no way she was going to make the trip across town.
“In the days beforehand, George and Charlotte had been really sweet, playing nurse by getting their mum drinks and looking after her as best they could. They even put a thermometer in her mouth and helped to take her temperature.”
On the wee prince’s first day of school, on September 7, Kate – also being looked after by her mum Carole Middleton – managed to get out of bed for a few family photos, although due to her crippling nausea, it was decided just proud dad Prince William and his excited son would feature in the official portrait.
There were tears in her eyes as the exhausted and emotional duchess, 35, waved her boys off for the 6km drive to the private school, which costs $33,000 per year and
includes among its elite alumni Cara Delevingne and rock chick Florence Welch.
Upon arrival in the family Range Rover, the little prince – who’ll be known as George Cambridge in class – appeared nervous as he shook hands with the Head of Lower School, Helen Haslem, who led him by the hand into the building.
Later, a relieved William, 35, revealed his son and heir had had a “good day” at Thomas’s Battersea, which has its own ski chalet in Austria, a canteen that serves only organic food and compulsory ballet classes for all students. He added, “It went well. There was one other parent who had more of an issue with their children, so I was quite pleased I wasn’t the one. It was really nice, actually. It’s a nice school.”
Although Kate missed the first drop-off, our insider reveals the duchess is also delighted. “It’s a momentous time in her life right now and she feels more maternal than ever. She can’t quite get to grips with the idea that her oldest baby has started school, she’s got her beautiful daughter at home and now she has another on the way. It’s all so overwhelming.”
The day after we revealed the news on our cover, on September 4, Kensington Palace confirmed Kate was expecting her third child. The press release stated, “The Queen and members of both families are delighted.”
Back in late July, on a tour of Poland, Kate had hinted at her condition, telling a fan who handed her a cuddly toy, “We will just have to have more babies!” Woman’sDay reported “an announcement could be any day – it’s a matter of ‘watch this space’”.
In late August, we revealed that Kate had been rushed to King Edward VII’s Hospital in London, where she’d spent time while pregnant with George, but on August 30, the duchess was well enough to visit a garden planted in memory of Princess Diana, before the acute morning sickness really kicked in and an official announcement had to be made.
“They thought it was best to be honest about the situation,” reports a royal source. “Kate suffers terribly in these early weeks, but she has a great medical team and a fantastic support system. Everyone is ecstatic for them.”
It’s thought Kate is not quite at the 12-week mark and the little bundle of joy, who will be fifth in line to the throne, is due in April. Shortly after his wife’s pregnancy was confirmed, William apologised
for her absence at an official engagement, saying, “She’s got a good excuse!”
He added, “It’s very good news, but we need Catherine to get over this first bit and then we can start celebrating. It’s always a bit anxious to start with, but she’s well.” William also confessed, “There’s not much sleep going on at the moment.”
Meanwhile, a source close to the duchess tells us, “Kate’s thrilled to be expecting baby number three as she always said she wanted three kiddies. She loved growing up as one of a trio. It was very much planned and the timing is perfect – she didn’t want to be sick at her sister’s wedding!
“Kate’s excited, but she’s also nervous because this is a high-risk pregnancy. She’s 35 and the morning sickness means there could be complications, so she’s being monitored very closely by her doctors. It’s also tough for the kids, who don’t always understand that Mummy isn’t well enough to play.
“Kate’s trying her best not to worry and is focusing on getting to the 12-week point. She’s told friends she already knows what sex the baby will be due to some early blood tests, but she’s keeping it quiet because she doesn’t want anyone to blab. However, it does mean she can work on shortlisting baby names.”
At the moment, British bookies have Alice and Arthur as odds-on favourites for names, while family insiders are already speculating that this third child is unlikely to be Kate’s last.
Her uncle Gary Goldsmith says, “She’s a natural mother. I wonder if she’ll stop at three. I doubt it – they are having such fun with the babies.” And former royal butler Paul Burrell insists, “William has always said as a child that he wished he was part of a larger family. He’s made no secret of wanting more children, so expect four or possibly five!”
However, as they prepare for the arrival of baby number three, the family is focused on George’s first days at school and, of course, his mum’s health. Our palace insider tells, “Kate and William are incredibly excited to be adding to their brood. They can’t wait to introduce their new prince or princess to the world.”
Shake on it: With dad Wills’ encouragement, George accepts a reassuring greeting from Head of Lower School Helen before moving inside.
The doting prince has reportedlyportedly called in a nutritionist to helpp with Kate’s morningning sickness. Healthythy citrus and peppermintermint drinks, plainain wafers, crackersers and broths rich in protein are all on the menu.