Just like Cinderella, Meghan Markle, while growing up, was the least likely anyone would have thought will end up as a real life princess in one of the most conservative royalties in the world. But Meghan, found by a real life prince unlike Cinderella, is now a real life princess. And this happened because a Prince, sixth in the line of succession to the British throne, summoned the courage to tell his Grandmother Queen Elizabeth II, that he wants to marry a black, divorced American woman!
On the 19th of May at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor, history was made as Meghan Markle and Prince Harry tied the knot. Whenever there is a royal wedding, of course history is made. However, this was not the typical royal wedding because of who this bride was.
Meghan is not your typical princess. The royal family has standards and there is a specification for royal wives. When you understand who Meghan is and where she is coming from, you will agree that she doesn’t tick all the boxes. Meghan is a Hollywood actress, born and raised in California to an American father and an African-American mother and the royal wedding wasn’t the first time she said “I do”. Meghan was raised by her divorced mother who wouldn’t have thought she was raising a princess as most royal wives are raised and trained for the role most of their lives.
Just before the wedding, the queen conferred the titles- Duke and Duchess of Sussex on Prince Harry and Meghan. The royal life comes with restrictions and privileges such that Meghan has had to close down her social media pages and her blog! She even resigned from acting as one can’t be a royal wife and have another job. The thing is that being a royal wife of Windsor is a full time job!
Apart from the 600 guests present in St. George’s Chapel, over 2,000 people on the grounds of the castle, and over 350,000 visitors who toured Britain, about 2 billion people all over the world watched the love birds exchanged their vows. The ceremony was a merging of both American and British traditions. With a passionate sermon delivered by Bishop Curry, the first black presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church, who spoke of love and quoted Martin Luther King Jr and the rendition of the American classic- “Stand by Me”, it is difficult to doubt that the royal family has embraced Meghan’s black heritage. The wedding took place on a Saturday as opposed to other royal weddings which are held on weekdays. Although Prince Harry also broke tradition and wore a wedding ring unlike other grooms from the royal family, the ceremony ended in the traditional English way with the singing of the British national anthem, “God Save the Queen”.
Meghan and Harry’s wedding was an event that celebrated love and was in no way a political event unlike most royal weddings. The guests at the wedding were primarily friends and family of the couple and some members of the general public like school children and charity organizations. No political leader was invited for this wedding! Prince Harry and Meghan did things their way and this spoke of a modern approach to a royal wedding which implies that Prince Harry and Meghan may not abide by the ancient royal rulebook.
However, the wedding seems to be worthwhile for the royals as its impact on the British economy is estimated at £1 billion, triggered from a surge in tourism, travel, hotels, restaurants, and the sales of commemorative items related to the royal wedding.
It’s been over two weeks since the royal wedding but the world is still basking in the excitement of the nuptials. This is stemming from huge global interest in the union of the world’s former most eligible bachelor and the biracial, divorced, American actress and activist. The world is excited about the way the royals not only accepted Meghan, but also the queen’s approval of the wedding in spite of the drama from some of Meghan’s family members.
Meghan’s race, upbringing, marital status, and citizenship all defy British royal tradition. While it is not difficult to suggest that the playboy Prince could make this choice of bride because he is sixth in line to the throne and unlikely to become king, the wedding of Meghan and Harry shows that the royal family is not stereotypical. The union of Meghan and Prince Harry represents our present day as there are many blended families in the world today and the number is increasing.
Though the royals are known for upholding their traditions, this wedding is proof that the royal family does not always conform, but they keep modifying their way of doing things to stay relevant in the scheme of things in our day as the union of a Prince to a Hollywood star and a divorcee, who is neither British, white nor aristocrat is unprecedented. This marriage speaks of possibilities and suggests that an African girl can have a dream to become a British princess someday and have that dream come true!
While some fear that Meghan may not be able to adjust and perfectly fit into the royal family, others opine that the royal family may have to adjust to Meghan but as an actress, Meghan will have no problem playing this role as long as she embraces it as the most challenging role she has ever taken on.
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