Kate Middleton candidly opened up about the isolation she felt after becoming a first-time mom. The Duchess of Cambridge made the confession while at the Ely and Caerau Children’s Centre in Cardiff, Wales on Wednesday. “It’s nice to be back in Wales,” she said. “I was chatting to some of the mums. It was the first year and I’d just had George — William was still working with search and rescue — and we came up here and I had a tiny, tiny baby in the middle of Anglesey. It was so isolated, so cut off. I didn’t have any family around, and he was doing night shifts. So…if only I had had a center like this.”
Kate and William lived in Wales for three years when the Duke worked as a Royal Air Force helicopter pilot. The Duchess returned to her old home on January 22 to visit the center, which offers services to children and adults. The engagement was a part of the royal’s 24-hour tour of the UK to launch her “5 Big Questions on the Under 5s” survey, which gives people across the UK an opportunity to provide their view on raising the next generation, while recognizing that everyone has a role in ensuring strong, healthy foundations for the youngest in society that will positively affect their lifelong outcomes.
The Duchess noted that many families these days are “so spread out.” “It's much harder to rely on other generations for support,” she said. "Have you heard about the survey we are doing? What do you think? There is so much pressure on parents, but actually they need the community too." As Kate arrived to the center on Wednesday, she admitted, "I will have to remember my Welsh!" The Duchess also mentioned her kids—Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis—saying, "We will be taking a trip down to Anglesey at some point."
The mom of three was in her element interacting with children at the center, where she met their resident guinea pigs. “I had guinea pigs when I was little,” she told the youngsters. When introducing herself to another group of kids who were drawing, the Duchess said, "Nice to meet you, I’m Catherine. These guinea pigs are a lot quieter than the ones I had at home!" Kate was presented with flowers and a drawing by four-year-old Erin Jones, who briefly hesitated to hand over the gifts. "Are you shy?" a senior teaching assistant asked. "Don’t worry, I am too," the Duchess told Erin. The royal also made a new pal. "You’re my friend!" a little boy told Kate, to which she replied: "You’re my friend too!"
In one of the center’s rooms, the maternal Duchess met 14-month-old Indie Corten-Maynard and one of her two moms Estelle Corten. "Are you going to push me over?" Kate laughed as Indie pushed an inflated ball at her. "She was asking me what it was like coming here as a same-sex couple and I told her how welcoming the centre has been," Estelle said of the royal encounter. "It was amazing to have the future Queen here in Ely!"