Worlds Away from Royals

As news networks are getting infected with wedding fever, gearing up for the coverage of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s big day, I am not. And apparently, many Brits are not either. According to a YouGov poll of 1,615 UK adults, 31 percent of respondents were “not very interested” in the wedding and 35 percent were “not interested at all.” Only nine percent were “very interested,” and 23 percent declared they were “fairly interested.”

I am interested in why people are not interested. Is there a poll for that?

In 2011, I woke up at 3:30 am for Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding coverage on the Today show. I made scones. They were very good. But I felt something weird that day, disconnected from the world that I was trying to connect with, and I couldn’t shake the feeling. I also didn’t understand the feeling, and I wondered if I was the only one. It was a beautiful occasion; my grandmother came from Great Britain so there was a social bond; it was going to give me something to talk about with family, friends, etc. But I felt empty—some may call it jealousy, but it was more complex than that. Here was a picture of a dream world, a fantasy, a peek at a $434,000 wedding dress, but it was a reminder that only one in 7 billion people get to live that dream, most don’t even get close. I woke up using a 20-year-old radio alarm clock that I had in college; I made scones from Bisquick and drank Walmart brand coffee and sat on a stained, carpeted floor in faded pajamas before gearing up to work my ass off for 13 hours. And some people don’t even have homes or coffee or jobs to wake up to. We, as in most people, never had one of those fancy, British hats people were wild about—where the hell would I wear one anyway? Even if I had an occasion to wear a fancy hat, I would feel out of place, like I didn’t belong.

When I get in these melancholy moods, I have to remind myself of the bigger picture, the one God has planned. I have to remind myself that living in this world is an infinitesimally small part of our existence; whether we are given much or given little, it only lasts as long as a blink. The real treasures are not stored in Windsor Castle for a handful of people, but in heaven, and we can’t begin to imagine how wonderful it will be.

In the meantime, I am working again on this royal wedding day, and I will not be watching, unless a patient has the news turned on in their room, which is very likely. And if they do, I will smile and ask them about it; I will remark at the dress, the carriage, the elegance . . .

all the while trying not to grit my teeth.

I’m sorry; I’m human.

I was also born on a Wednesday.