While most of us had always seen Queen Elizabeth as a formidable figure who was the figurehead of a powerful kingdom, we often forget that she was also a mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.
After Prince William and Prince Harry lost their mother in a tragic accident, the Queen reportedly took a much bigger role in her grandson’s life.
It is no secret that Queen Elizabeth was incredibly fond of all her grandchildren. She forged deep connections with each one of them. While to the rest of the world she was a Queen, to her grandchildren she was also their grandmother.
When the new Prince of Wales posted on Instagram about how he felt about the loss, he mentioned that while she was his Queen, she was also his grandma and he would miss the personal connection they shared quite a lot.
Similarly, the Duke of Sussex, Prince Harry also had a very close and special connection with his grandmother. Despite her being the Queen of England, she was also just a grandma to Harry, a grandmother he had a very close bond with.
The strength of their bond goes back to Harry’s childhood when he spent a lot of time with the Queen. As he grew older, he began to learn lessons from Queen Elizabeth and how she conducted herself and her business. He saw firsthand his grandmother’s character where she put her duty before her own needs as well.
The younger son of King Charles was always known to be more laid-back and jovial compared to his older brother. Similarly, he was known to have a very cheeky and fun relationship with his grandmother. They were known to share a “warm and jokey grandmother grandson rapport” both in private as well as in public.
One famous incident from Harry’s youth was a gift to his grandmother, that might not have been as well received if it had been from anyone else. He gifted the sovereign a shower cap on Christmas, which had the message, “Ain’t life a [expletive]” written on it. According to source, the Queen absolutely loved the present and found it hilarious.
In another much-talked-about incident, the Duke of Sussex was tasked with an important matter from his Grandmother, the Queen. When she got her first mobile phone, she ask her grandson, Prince Harry, to help her out. She asked him to record a message for her voicemail. And of course, as the good grandson, he obliged.
According to reports, the message he recorded was quite hilarious. In the message, he said, “Hey, wassup? This is Liz. Sorry, I’m away from the throne. Press one for Philip, two for Charles, and three for the Corgis!”
According to reports, Robin Janvrin who was Queen Elizabeth’s Private Secretary at the time, was shocked when he heard this message. But when it was brought to the late monarch’s attention, she found the entire thing quite hilarious.
It was clear that the late monarch had a special place in her heart for her beloved grandson Prince Harry. When the Duke of Sussex announced his relationship with Meghan Markle to the world, and his intentions to marry her people were shocked.
Meghan Markle was a biracial American woman who had been once divorced. While some believed she would not be accepted by the monarchy, it was later reported that the Queen had welcomed her warmly.
Royal expert Katie Nicholl said the Queen appreciated the positivity she brought into her grandson’s life and hence was supportive of the union. However, what upset the Queen had been some behavior on Harry’s end.
“She was very upset by some of Harry’s demands and the way he went about certain things,” a source said. The same source added that one of the things the Queen did not appreciate was that Harry and Meghan refused to use her staff and instead hired their own cake maker and florist.
Harry also asked the Archbishop of Canterbury to marry him and Meghan without clearing it with the Queen first, which she did not appreciate either, and caused a strain in their relationship.
Two years after their wedding, the Sussexes in a shocking move announced that they were stepping down from their roles as working royals. Harry assured everyone that the Queen and his father, now-King Charles were aware of the decision and had been included in the process of making it as well.
After stepping down as senior royals, the Sussexes moved to the United States. While it seemed Harry had caused a rift in his relationship with his family, sources said that the Queen wished him no ill and would welcome them back into the fold if they ever changed their minds.
While she let them retain their title, she did strip Prince Harry of his royal patronages and honorary military rights. Harry revealed that while the decision hurt him, he understood why it was made.
The Oprah interview that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex gave put rest to the rumor that Harry’s relationship with his grandmother, the Queen had been fractured. During the interview, he revealed, “I have spoken more with my grandmother in the last year than I have done in many, many years.”
He maintained that he respected his grandmother and still saw her as a wonderful mentor to him. While some speculated that she would also strip the couple of their Duke and Duchess titles, it was made clear that this was not the case, and that the Queen would never resort to that.
In another interview with James Corden, Prince Harry revealed that he made sure to do video calls with his grandmother and that she had seen his son Archie running around a few times on zoom calls.
Harry and Meghan were already in the UK, as the couple was expected to attend the WellChild Awards in London, when the news of the Queen’s ill-health spread, the couple canceled their appearance at the awards and Harry made his way to Scotland, alone.
Harry’s flight landed shortly after the news of the Queen’s death was announced. He was seen making his way to Balmoral in a black SUV, covering half his face with his hand, understandably not wanting to be photographed.
It’s understood that the family wanted Prince Harry to be there, even though he was unable to get to Balmoral in time to see his grandmother,” Nicholl told ET.
“But Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, was not, we understand, invited to join the family,” Nicholl added. “She has said she will go to Balmoral another time. But I think it is quite significant that Prince Harry traveled to Balmoral on his own without his wife.”
Prince Harry made a statement on his non-profit organization Archewell’s website, in it he wrote, “Granny, while this final parting brings us great sadness, I am forever grateful for all of our first meetings—from my earliest childhood memories with you, to meeting you for the first time as my Commander-in-Chief, to the first moment you met my darling wife and hugged your beloved great-grandchildren.”
He went on to add, “I cherish these times shared with you, and the many other special moments in between. You are already sorely missed, not just by us, but by the world over.” Clearly there was still a lot of love left in their relationship.
It is no secret that both the sons of King Charles are not on the best terms with each other. It is often evident when both of them do not show up for important events together. Or how Prince William and Kate Middleton did not even attend the first birthday party of Harry’s daughter.
However, it has been speculated that the death of their grandmother might have brought the two boys closer together. The brothers arrived together at Windsor Castle over the weekend with their respective spouses in tow. The four of them displaying a united front amid the heartbreak their family is experiencing is incredibly important.
An insider told the press that it was William who invited the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to join them at Windsor. The four of them hence showed a united front and met with the crowd that had been waiting for hours. They met with fans for 45 minutes before they headed back in the same car. Hopefully, the relationship of the Sussexes with the rest of the Royal Family is on the mend now.
Prince Harry has come a long way and has grown into a mature and level-headed man. His relationship with his grandmother was strong throughout his lifetime, which is a blessing.