The Queen was a huge source of support for Prince William during his dark days.
Losing a mother is an unbearable form of grief and Prince William was only 15 years old when his own, Princess Diana, died in a car crash in 1997 at the age of 36. More recently the 40-year-old royal lost his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth on September 8 of this year. She died at the age of 96 at her Scottish home. In a statement after her death, Prince William recalled how his 'Grannie' comforted him with her kind words after the loss of his mother, one of the most devastating moments of his life.
In an official statement, he said that while the world may have lost an "extraordinary leader," he had to say goodbye to a beloved family member. "And while I will grieve her loss, I also feel incredibly grateful. I have had the benefit of The Queen's wisdom and reassurance into my fifth decade. My wife has had twenty years of her guidance and support. My three children have got to spend holidays with her and create memories that will last their whole lives. She was by my side at my happiest moments. And she was by my side during the saddest days of my life. I knew this day would come, but it will be sometime before the reality of life without Grannie will truly feel real," said William. He then went on to pay gratitude for "the kindness she showed my family and me. And I thank her on behalf of my generation for providing an example of service and dignity in public life that was from a different age, but always relevant to us all." He also recalled something the queen said decades ago that has a strong resonance now. "My grandmother famously said that grief was the price we pay for love. All of the sadness we will feel in the coming weeks will be a testament to the love we felt for our extraordinary Queen. I will honor her memory by supporting my father, The King, in every way I can."
The Queen's comforting words helped Prince William navigate through the grief of losing his mother at a young age. In the special A Royal Team Talk: Tackling Mental Health, Diana's eldest son admitted that the pain that came with her death was incomparable. "I think when you are bereaved at a very young age, anytime really, but particularly at a young age - I can resonate closely to that - you feel a pain like no other pain," he told soccer stars Gareth Southgate, Peter Crouch, Thierry Henry, Danny Rose, and Jermaine Jenas, according to ET Online. He added "And you know that in your life it's going to be very difficult to come across something that is going to be an even worse pain than that. But it also brings you so close to all those other people out there who have been bereaved," he said. "So instantly, when you talk to someone else… You can almost see it in their eyes sometimes." He also admitted that it was time people be open about their mental health without stigma and talk "about our emotions because we're not robots."
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Oli Scarff