Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Have Sights Set on California as They 'Create Their Own Life'
Though the couple and their son 10-month-old Archie have been living in Canada since announcing they were stepping back from their royal roles in January, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expected to spend time in Meghan’s hometown of Los Angeles this summer.
“This is what Meghan and Harry have always wanted — to create their own life,” a royal insider tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue. “It’s got to feel like an immense relief to get out of the U.K. and go down their own path.”
Meghan, 38, has a big support system in L.A., including her mother Doria Ragland, who works as a social worker and yoga instructor, and several friends who have been to visit the couple on Vancouver Island, where they have been staying with Archie.
“They love being in Canada, but they are looking at houses in L.A. too,” a person in their circle previously told PEOPLE. “They’ll likely have houses in both places.”
Meghan memorably once wrote on her lifestyle blog The Tig, “I was born and raised in Los Angeles, a California girl who lives by the ethos that most things can be cured with either yoga, the beach or a few avocados.”
Meghan and Harry, 35, capped off a busy week of final royal engagements in the U.K., including reuniting with Prince William and Kate Middleton during Commonwealth Service on March 9, where the two couples’ meeting was noticeably strained.
Though seated close to each other during the Queen’s procession, the two couples did not interact beyond brief hellos to one another before Harry and Meghan closed out their final joint appearance as royals to depart for Canada.
The rift between the two brothers first emerged when William warned Harry that his romance with Meghan was moving too swiftly.
“[Their relationship is] forever changed. They won’t get back to the way they were,” a source tells PEOPLE. “Harry is looking straight ahead at his future with his family. They will be spending time in California and in Canada. He’s not looking back.”
The tension between the two brothers was previously addressed by Harry on ITV’s documentary Harry & Meghan: An African Journey, which was released last fall.
Speaking about the pressures of their jobs in the royal family, Harry said, “Inevitably stuff happens. But we’re brothers, we’ll always be brothers. We’re certainly on different paths at the moment. I’ll always be there for him and as I know, he’ll always be there for me. We don’t see each other as much as we used to because we’re so busy but I love him dearly.”
Despite being on separate paths, discussions between Harry and William still unfolded privately while Harry was in the U.K.
“I know that the brothers have had the opportunity to talk behind closed doors. It was helpful and useful,” a friend of the Sussex’s told PEOPLE. “As time goes on, things will become a little less, not raw, but . . . time is a good thing for people to go away and think.”