On Thursday, the royal mom of two attended the launch of a series of educational films created by Best Beginnings, a charity partner of her Heads Together campaign. The films aim to raise awareness of maternal mental health challenges and start conversations about the wellbeing of parents and their children.
She expressed her sympathy to all those affected by the terror attack before beginning her planned speech at the event.
“Before I begin, I know you would all want to join me in sending our thoughts and prayers to all those sadly affected by yesterday’s terrible attack in Westminster,” she said. “We will be thinking of all the families, as we discuss the important issues we’re here to talk about.”
Her appearance came as Queen Elizabeth postponed her planned visit to open the headquarters of the Metropolitan Police, New Scotland Yard. The palace announced late Wednesday, “In light of today’s events the decision has been taken to postpone the Queen’s engagement to New Scotland Yard.”
On Thursday, the Queen released a message to the Acting Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service, Craig Mackey.
“Following the shocking events in Westminster, Prince Philip and I are sorry that we will not be able to open the New Scotland Yard building as planned today, for very understandable reasons,” the statement read. “I look forward to visiting at a later date.
“My thoughts, prayers, and deepest sympathy are with all those who have been affected by yesterday’s awful violence.
“I know I speak for everyone in expressing my enduring thanks and admiration for the members of the Metropolitan Police Service and all who work so selflessly to help and protect others.”
While at the event, which took place at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists in London, Kate gave her powerful speech about the importance of maternal mental health before introducing Jessica and Jon, a couple who shared the conversation that helped them through postnatal depression. This week was chosen for the event as Mother’s Day in the U.K. is on Sunday.
“Personally, becoming a mother has been such a rewarding and wonderful experience,” Kate said. “However, at times it has also been a huge challenge — even for me who has support at home that most mothers do not.
“Nothing can really prepare you for you the sheer overwhelming experience of what it means to become a mother. It is full of complex emotions of joy, exhaustion, love, and worry, all mixed together. Your fundamental identity changes overnight. You go from thinking of yourself as primarily an individual, to suddenly being a mother, first and foremost.
“And yet there is no rule book, no right or wrong — you just have to make it up and do the very best you can to care for your family. For many mothers, myself included, this can, at times lead to lack of confidence and feelings of ignorance.
WATCH: How the Royals Have Responded to the Attack
“Sadly, for some mothers, this experience can be made so much harder due to challenges with their own mental health…Conversations are crucial for mental wellbeing and they should be part of everyday family life. Talking about a problem with a friend or another trusted person can be the beginning of getting better.
“This week, as we look forward to Mother’s Day, I would love to see everyone celebrate and value the fundamental importance that mothers play in family life.”
The royal then joined a parent support group to talk to moms and dads about how becoming a parent affected their mental health and how open and honest conversations with family, friends or other trusted people helped them get through the tough times.