Prince Harry offered his support to two siblings whose mother had died last year, reassuring them that “it will get better.”
Harry, 32, attended the annual rugby match between the Royal Navy and Army at Twickenham stadium in London on Saturday, where he met with 11-year-old Emily and 13-year-old Isaac Briggs during half-time, according to The Telegraph. The children’s mother, Kim, died after being struck by a cyclist in London while on her lunch break.
“He just told us everything will be OK, even though everything seems really bad at the moment, it will get better,” Emily told the outlet, adding that it was “really nice” to meet the royal.
Isaac added that Harry was a “normal guy.”
“We talked about the cadets, we talked about rugby, about losing parents — he was the same age I was and [it happened] in kind of a similar way,” he said.
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The children’s father, Matt, said the encounter occurred after an acquaintance was able to put the family in touch with the prince, who then invited them to the rugby match. He described the meeting as “a very, very special moment.”
“I think especially for them (the children), they know his story,” Matt said, adding that he let his children speak with Harry without him. “Your grief as a husband is different to grief as a child, I just wanted to stand back and let them have that moment.”
“I can safely say that losing my mom at the age of 12 and therefore shutting down all of my emotions for the last 20 years has had quite a serious effect on not only my personal life but also my work as well,” he said.
He continued, “My way of dealing with it was sticking my head in the sand, refusing to ever think about my mum because why would that help?”
After years not thinking about it and being “a problem” through a lot of his 20s, he says he experienced two years of “total chaos.” So with the “huge support” of his older brother, Prince William, when he was 28, he began seeking professional help, telling Gordon he saw a therapist “more than a couple of times.” He also credited boxing as a coping mechanism.
Now, the prince says he is in a “good place” — and already a godfather, he admitted he would love to have kids. (He is getting serious with American girlfriend Meghan Markle, after all.)
“Because of the process that I’ve been through over the last 2½-3 years, I’ve now been able to take my work seriously, be able to take my private life seriously as well, and be able to put blood, sweat and tears into the things that really make a difference,’ he said.
Royal or not, “No matter who you are, the conversation has to be the beginning,” Harry said.