Today we are celebrating the 34th birthday of the Duke of Cambridge. Yesterday, Prince William was in Saint-Étienne, France to watch England play Slovakia in the Euro 2016. This morning, he boarded a commercial flight in Lyon heading for Heathrow. Several travelers in Lyon tweeted their excitement at seeing the prince who boarded his flight last and promptly dozed off for the flight across the Channel. At Heathrow, William was the first to deplane, making his way to a waiting Range Rover on the tarmac. He will be spending his birthday with his little family, of course.
William has gotten some bad press this year, but I think--like much of the bad press leveled at his wife--the accusations are often unfair and take advantage of William's more reserved personality. Several weeks ago William was pictured doing warm-up stretches before a polo game. Anyone who takes pilates or yoga (btw, it is World Yoga Day today!) will immediately recognize this as the cat-camel stretch, one of my favorites.
I laughed when I saw the funny snaps and particularly William's good-natured grin as he contorted himself this way and that. It reminded me how the press and the public often forgets William's more complicated personality.
Personalities come in all shapes, sizes, and volumes. Some are very outgoing and bubbly, while there are others among us who keep a little more to ourselves. From the outside, the more discreet personalities can seem cold and even unkind, while in reality they can be as caring and thoughtful as the gregarious. Just this past week the Daily Mail ran an odd article about how well Kate and Harry get along, which is perfectly true, but right in the middle, the article took a swipe at William, commenting that he seems at odds with the happy friendship between his wife and brother. This is absurd.
William keeps pretty tight "internal security" around his private personality, but given how long he has been in the public spotlight, none of us is ignorant of the fact that he is quite the tease in private, who opens up around family and good friends.
It is impossible to divorce the attractive quality of future king of England, but William obviously also charmed Kate with his sense of humor. That was clear in many photos of the two throughout their dating days...
...and it is clear that he continues to charm her now she is his wife.
We see his warmth shine in his charity work, too, where people from all walks and strata of life light up when William reveals his charm:
The mischievous little boy we saw larking around outside St. Mary Magdalene as a child isn't gone, he is only revealed occasionally.
William is clearly a man who loves his wife, his children, and his broader family, his charities, his country and his Queen. In his care and attention to all these people, his true and private personality is revealed. I like him very much and I think he will weather the storms of public opinion just fine as the years go by. Wishing him a perfect day with his beautiful family! Happy Birthday, Your Royal Highness!
P.S. My sister Fiona shares her birthday with Prince William, so today we are also celebrating her! Fiona took over the Kate's Clothes Instagram page for me when I went to law school because I couldn't keep up with it all, and she has done a fantastic job with that. Happy Birthday, Fiona! I hope we can pull off a day of royal worthy celebrations for you! :)