The late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, and I quote: “We must discover the power of love, the redemptive power of love. And when we do that, we will make of this old world a new world. Love is the only way.”
There’s power in love. Don’t underestimate it. Don’t even over-sentimentalise it. There’s power, power in love. Our lives are meant to be lived in that love—that’s why we are here.
– Most Reverend Michael Curry, in his sermon at St. George’s Chapel
Where do I even start? On Saturday, May 19th, 2018, His Royal Highness Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales married Rachel Meghan Markle in a ceremony at St. George’s Chapel on the grounds of Windsor Castle in Windsor, England. And I was there.
Ok, well not, THERE there, but in Windsor on The Long Walk with about 100,000 of my fellow Royalists. As a life long, extremely passionate lover of the Royal Family, and the daugther of another life long, extremely passionate Royal Family lover, it was a dream come true to come to Windsor for the big day.
Prince Harry holds a special place in my heart. He’s been through so much grief and heartache, so to see him this happy is incredible. Can you imagine your parents going through the messiest of divorces in the public eye, with speculations about your paternity (for the last time, Diana met James Hewitt 2 years after Harry was born!), having known your whole life exactly how you were expected to act, being called “the spare” while your brother is “the heir”. Your beloved mother battling with mental illness and then unexpectedly dying in a horrific car crash when you’re only 13, and 6 days later, you have to walk through the streets of London behind your mother’s coffin with millions of people watching you, all without showing emotion.
Yes, the royal family seems to have it all, but it doesn’t come without immeasurable personal sacrifice. He’s made mistakes, he’s acted in ways he shouldn’t, he’s battled depression and anger, so to see him come out the other side and come into his own was something very special.
Diana was such a wonderful mother to Wills and Harry before she was gone too soon, so to see both of her sons so happy, it makes me emotional.
WHEW! Ok, anyway, now for the big day for those of us NOT a part of The Firm!
We were lucky enough to get a hotel room in Windsor (I took an educated guess, as the Palace annouced it was a spring wedding, Kate was due in April, and the Queen celebrates her birthday in June, and booked hotel rooms for the entire month of May LOL), which is a beautiful little town to begin with.
So take that pretty little town and add a MASSIVE amount of British patriatism, and it was perfect. There were signs and flags and general excitement everywhere.
We spent the days before the wedding walking around town, it was packed with reporters and news crews and so. many. people. I’m sure I’m in the background of lots of newscasts!
We’d decided we wanted to be on The Long Walk, where we could see the carriage ride coming and going, with Windsor Castle in the background. I was a bit nervous about getting there early enough, and we very briefly considered sleeping there (!!!) but it wasn’t necessary. We arrived about 6:15am, and there were a few people already there at the front of the barriers, but we still got incredible spots.
There were TVs set up so we could watch the celebrity arrivals and the ceremony. There were also plenty of food trucks and facilities, and honestly, it was one big party. And much less intense than you’d expect, everyone was happy and joyus and we all knew we were there to celebrate!
FINALLY, the TV showed Meghan and her mother Doria driving down the Long Walk, and we were able to see them wiz past on their way to the ceremony!
We watched the ceremony intently, knowing that soon our time would come to see the happy couple! Yes, I cried during the ceremony, which is highly unusual for me, but the emotions of the day were high! We all cheered as Harry and Meghan kissed on the steps, then turned away from the TV and waited up against the barriers for the carriage ride!
YOU GUYS. When Harry and Meghan passed, it was incredible. I know it probably seems a bit crazy to have gone all the way to England for about 15 seconds of carriage ride, but I would never change it. By the end of the weekend, both mom and I were flat out exhausted, and it was 100% WORTH IT.
I posted a ton of pictures and videos on my Instagram if you want to see more!
Just for fun, here’s a quick timeline of Meghan and Harry’s whirlwind (by any standards, much less royal standards!) romance.
- July 2016: Harry and Meghan meet on a blind date. (It’s widely assumed Violet von Westenholz set them up.) They meet on two more dates in July and then Harry invited Meghan to Botswana.
- Oct. 31, 2016: The romance hits the tabloids.
- Nov. 8, 2016: In a statement, Prince Harry confirms Meghan is his girlfriend and condemns press coverage of her.
- Sept. 6, 2017: Meghan covers Vanity Fair, speaks out Harry.
- Sept. 25, 2017: Harry and Meghan are photographed together for the first time at the Invictus Games in Toronto.
- Nov. 2017: Meghan annouces she’s leaving acting and moves to England. On Nov. 27th, the engement is annouced.
- Jan. 9, 2018: Meghan shuts down all her social media accounts.
- March 12, 2018: Meghan makes her first public appearance with the Queen.
- April 25, 2018: Meghan’s last episode of Suits airs.
- May 19, 2018: Harry and Meghan marry and are given the titles Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
Also, here’s a more in-depth look at each venue the couple used on their wedding day.