Predicting a baby boom: Will the Royal Birth start another mothering trend?

August 3, 2013 1:13 pm

“When are we going to have our first baby?” I asked my long-suffering other half over breakfast under a week ago.

royal babyJonathan looked up with his mouth still half open, likely from shock, and stared at me unblinkingly for several seconds. I may as well have asked him if we should go and live under the sea.

“Erm,” he spluttered, “when we’ve got our own house and we’re married?”

“But that’s so far away!” I complained. “I’m broody NOW.”

“What happened to all that No-Kids-Before-I’m-At-Least-35 stuff?”

“But at this rate, I’m going to be the only old mum left!” I cried. “Nobody is leaving their babies ’til later any more, even the toffs are kicking out babies before they’re my age.”

“Lexi,” he said, turning to me and heaving a deep, knowing sigh, “does this have anything to do with the Duchess of Cambridge giving birth?”

The power of suggestion has never been as tangibly evident as having sway over me until now. A large part of me is still determined to not even THINK about children before I’m at least a few years passed the dreaded 3-0. And even I, as many others, such as Whoopi Goldberg, are a little confused as to why the media are making such a prolonged fuss over our tiny future king.

But I can’t deny something very maternal in me was stirred at seeing the images beamed across the world as Prince William, his young, immaculate wife (yes, I know she had several someone’s touch her look up before she greeted the press) and their newborn baby step out from the hospital. Perhaps it was, as has been championed by so many feminists, the fact that Kate was so unashamed of her post-baby bump, as we have been programmed by airbrushed celebrities to be – Elizabeth Hurley congratulating herself in an interview on not being caught by the cameras after first giving birth to her son. Perhaps it was the fact that the Duke of Cambridge seemed firstly so happy, secondly so cool about it and, thirdly, to be taking to it like a fish to water, somehow able to smoothly make jokes about the fact his child had more hair than him to two dozen strangers, then pop the child in a baby seater in the back and drive – yes, HIMSELF – away from the hospital with sublime and smiling Catherine in the back. Or perhaps it was Catherine herself, with the aid of those few people who made her look so Yummy New Mummy, grinning placidly and taking it all in her stride.baby

And wherever the great and the good (or, if you want to count Kim Kardashian into the mix of influential, just rich and famous) lead, we follow like sheep without even realising it. When, before three years ago, did we ever hear of women getting implants to make their BOTTOMS look bigger??? Women in India have been taking fat pills to achieve the new Hollywood view of perfection. After the Olympics in London, all of us got a new membership at our local gym! And I’ve lost count of wedding pictures I’ve seen where the first thing I think was, ‘Did you just take a picture of the Duchess of Cambridge on her wedding day into the designer and say: ‘Make my dress like hers.’?’

Boris Johnson, I read in the Metro the other day (who is a father of five! Who knew?!), is proclaiming the Olympics gave Londoners a much-needed feel-good boost, which is why, he claims, every woman seems to either have a baby in her arms or in her body. I can no longer pretend that I haven’t seen the evidence of the multitudes of new humans coming into this world…

So with the Olympics having done so much for London, will the birth of young George Alexander Louis (wonderful names, by the way, especially as the last two are essentially male versions of two of my names) spawn thousands of other babies, possibly right across the Commonwealth, if not the entire world? Surely if someone as originally stalwart as I was against having children at this stage feels a sudden need to procreate, there will be many other young women out there unwilling to fight these instincts. For god’s sake, I found myself on a Mother and Baby website the other day! ME!

Of course, it remains to be seen and time alone… roughly nine months…will tell…

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