Prince William has revealed how the birth of his ‘little rascal’ son has changed his life.
In a candid interview, his first since becoming a father, he admitted the days following George’s arrival had been ‘emotional’, and affected him more than he thought possible.
But the Prince could not resist joking about the sleepless nights and endless dirty nappies of fatherhood – and how his newborn son reminded him of his younger brother, Prince Harry.
More story, pictures and videos after the cut.
William gave the interview, his first since George’s birth on July 22, to CNN’s royal correspondent Max
Foster as part of a documentary about his determination to preserve wildlife in Africa.
Prince William’s Passion: New Hope, New Father airs on the American channel on September 15, but excerpts of the interview have been released today.
He was interviewed in the gardens of Kensington Palace on August 2, when his son was 11 days old.
On being a new father, William said: ‘I think the last few weeks for me have been just a very different emotional experience. Something I never thought I would feel myself.
‘And I find, again it’s only been a short period, but a lot of things affect me differently now.
He recalled the ‘daunting’ moment he introduced George to the world on the steps of the Lindo Wing at St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington, and made clear his determination to give his son as normal a life as possible.
On leaving hospital, he said: ‘I think more shock and dauntingness [sic] was the feeling I felt but … I think I was on such a high anyway, and so was Catherine, about George that really we were happy to show him off to whoever wanted to see him.
‘As any new parent knows, you’re only too happy to show off your new child and, you know, proclaim that he is the best looking or the best everything.’
But asked whether he was comfortable with the experience, William admitted: ‘Again it’s not somewhere I enjoy being, [but] I know that the position I’m in … that’s what’s required of me to do.
‘It’s nice that people want to see George, so, you know – I’m just glad he wasn’t screaming his head off the whole way through.’
The prince revealed that his decision to take the wheel as they drove away from hospital was intended as a public demonstration of his determination to do things his way.
He said: ‘Where I can be I am as independent as I want to be, the same as Catherine and Harry. We’ve all grown up differently to other generations. And I very much feel if I can do it myself, I want to do it myself.
‘And there are times where you can’t do it yourself and the system takes over or it’s appropriate to do things differently.
‘But, I think driving your son and your wife away from hospital was really important to me. And I don’t like fuss, so it’s much easier to just do it yourself.’
Asked by Mr Foster if he was sending a message to the world, he replied: ‘I think so. I’m just doing it the way I know … if it’s the right way then brilliant, if it’s not – if it’s the wrong way – then I’ll try to do it better.
‘But I’m reasonably headstrong about what I believe in, and what I go for, and I’ve got fantastic people around me who give me great support and advice.’
And he joked: ‘And I didn’t stall! It’s an automatic, so it’s alright.’
Asked about baby George’s character, William said affectionately: ‘Well, yeah – he’s a little bit of a rascal, put it that way.
‘So he either reminds me of my brother or me when I was younger. I’m not sure.
‘But he’s doing very well at the moment. He does like to keep having his nappy changed.’
And William confirmed that he changed his son’s first nappy while still at hospital, describing it as a nerve-
‘I did the first nappy, yeah,’ he said. ‘A badge of honour, exactly. I wasn’t allowed to get away with that. I had every midwife staring at me, “You do it. You do it”.
‘He’s growing quite quickly actually. But he’s a little fighter. He kind of, he wriggles around quite a lot.
‘And he doesn’t want to go to sleep that much, which is a little bit of a problem …’ Mr Foster asked: ‘So you’re up a little bit at night?’ ‘A little bit,’ William replied.
‘Not as much as Catherine. But, you know, she’s doing a fantastic job [she’s doing] very well.’
The couple are clearly making sure their cocker spaniel, Lupo, doesn’t feel neglected. He said: ‘For me, Catherine, and now little George are my priorities. And Lupo. He’s coping all right, actually. As a lot of people know who have got dogs and are bringing newborn back, they take a little bit of time to adapt, but, no he’s been all right so far.
‘He’s been slobbering sort of around the house a bit, so he’s perfectly happy.’
And although it was perhaps not terribly politically correct to admit it, William also joked that it would be a relief to return to work as an RAF Search and Rescue pilot based on Anglesey, North Wales.
He returned to work on August 7 after a fortnight’s statutory paternity leave, and was finally joined by Kate and their son early last week.
He said: ‘Well, as a few fathers might know, I’m actually quite looking forward to going back to work. Get some sleep. So I’m just hoping the first few shifts I go back I don’t have any night jobs.’
William also discussed his hope that one day Prince George will have the same love of Africa that he had Harry did as boys. His own passion for the continent was instilled in him by his father, Prince Charles, and his late mother Princess Diana.
William said he planned to introduce Africa and its endangered species to his young son in his Kensington Palace nursery at an early age.
Mr Foster said: ‘You talked about your father possibly whispering [sweet nothings] quietly in your ear as a young boy. Are you going to do the same for Prince George because it’s such a cause that you care so deeply about?’
William replied: ‘Probably. I’ll have toy elephants and rhinos around the room. We’ll cover it in, you know, lots of bushes and things like that. Make him grow up as if he’s in the bush.’
The full interview will be broadcast on CNN internationally on September 15 and in the UK on ITV at a later date.
Source: UK Daily Mail