"There were all sorts of mixed emotions."


Becoming a mom for the first time can be a nerve-wracking experience for anyone, but the stakes are even higher when the world is watching your every move. Just ask Kate Middleton, who described her post-baby photo call after welcoming Prince George in 2013 as "terrifying."

In case you forgot, it's royal tradition for new moms to present their future heirs on the steps of the Lindo Wing of St. Mary's Hospital hours after giving birth. And while the Duchess of Cambridge looked flawless during George's debut, she admits, on the inside, she felt completely anxious.

Kate Middleton and Prince George
Credit: Ferdaus Shamim/Getty Images

“Yeah, slightly terrifying, slightly terrifying, I’m not going to lie,” Kate opened up to Giovanna Fletcher, the host of the Happy, Mum, Happy Baby podcast, about presenting George to the public.

Despite her fears, the mom of three explained why she decided to go through with the royal custom. “Everyone had been so supportive and both William and I were really conscious that this was something that everyone was excited about and, you know, we’re hugely grateful for the support that the public had shown us, and actually for us to be able to share that joy and appreciation with the public, I felt was really important," she said.

"But equally it was coupled with a newborn baby, and inexperienced parents, and the uncertainty of what that held, so there were all sorts of mixed emotions."

Kate – who is promoting her "5 Big Questions on the Under Fives" survey on early childhood development — also touched on the other high-pressure tradition that directly follows each photo call: royal dads putting the baby's carseat in the car for the trip home.

"We were like ‘What do we do?… in a swaddle?’ ‘How’s this supposed to work?'" she explained of her and William's initial confusion. "We’d even tried to practice with a little baby, like a little doll, at home but you know it just never works out the way you planned it so it was quite hard to do that on the world’s stage, but no, he did a very good job."

At the end of the day, the nerves were worth it, according to Kate. She described holding George for the first time as, "amazing" and "utterly extraordinary." "He was very sweet," she added. "And I was also sort of relieved that he was a happy, healthy boy."

Listen to Kate's entire interview here.