British Royal Family

FIRST PERSON: Why Royal Baby watch is giving me extreme anxiety & killing my social life

Yep, I'm officially afraid to leave my phone long enough to go pee.

By Jess Pullar
As a journalist, it's part and parcel to the job that when a major news event breaks, you drop everything and jump on it.
From surprise engagements, groundbreaking announcements and even a few police chases (thanks to my days as a regional reporter), there's the expectation that writers will cover breaking news at any given time - within reason of course.
It's something I've been quite happy to oblige in - there's nothing quite like the thrill of breaking a big story as it happens and sharing the news with an audience who are desperate for the information you're able to provide.
But lately, there's been one impending event on my mind that will inevitably break at any given time - but this time, my emotional investment in the cause has officially threatened my sanity. Multiple times.
I am of course referring to Meghan Markle's Royal Baby, who has now surpassed its due date, and has me losing the plot in the process while it sits comfortably baking in Meghan's regal tum.
It sounds ridiculous, but I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that Royal Baby watch has had a major impact on my life - socially, emotionally and personally.
It all starts with the notifications.
As soon as my phone beeps, my eyes are instantly drawn to its screen in panic.
My initial reaction is to search frantically for key words "Meghan", "baby" and "Sussex". If I don't see any, all is well (until the next notification pings, that is).
This is an hourly, if not half-hourly occurrence, and sadly often falls during times when I'm supposed to be socialising with loved ones.
Yes, I have become that person who constantly checks their phone at the dinner table, only ever half engaged in the conversation.
To my friends and family - I'm sorry. I promise I'm not that rude normally!
Here are some classic examples of me being rude. And dedicated to the job. But also distressingly rude.
Phone facing up, always. Sorry, Mum. (Image: Supplied)
I might look relaxed but I'm ready to jump on a notification at any moment and have a small heart attack in the process. (Image: Supplied)
Then come the mini-heart attacks.
With Harry and Meghan's newly-launched Instagram account being the firm favourite as the medium of choice for them to post any Royal Baby updates on, my notification alerts from their account are on super-sonic sound.
And frankly, I reckon they know it, because they love to post about everything but the Royal Baby - and it's killing me.
To make matters worse, Instagram's notifications flash up on my iPhone initially with just the one line: "@SussexRoyal just posted."
By the time my heart has leaped into my throat, my shaking fingers scrambling to unlock my phone by shoving my blood drained spinning face in front of the screen for quick face-recognition, I've lost precious seconds in knowing about that anticipated baby announcement.
Because the moment that news is finally confirmed, I'll be going deep into the trenches to report on it for you, dear reader, on this very website.
But then, for the last month, their posts have always been about something else.
From posts about Harry's involvement in the London Marathon (curse you Haz for your amazing involvement in an incredible cause), to wishing the Queen aka Gan Gan a happy birthday - my reaction is always as follows:
And I know I'm not alone in this - the posts to @SussexRoyal's Instagram account are often flooded with comments from fans who, like me, suffer a minor anxiety attack thinking it's the Royal Baby announcement.
"Why are y'all truing to give us a heart attack with a notification?! And then it's not the baby," one follower wrote.
Meanwhile another fan wrote: "My heart just dropped a beat," accompanied by several sweating emojis - I feel you, girl.
See, I'm not alone! (Image: @SussexRoyal/Instagram)
And then there's the broken sleep.
I can't remember the last time I slept right through the night without waking up to a Tweet notification from various royal accounts and reporters situated in the UK.
And every morning, I wake up and scroll through my phone in vague disbelief that it hasn't happened yet.
But happened it has not - and as we wait with baited breath for even the slightest whisper of baby from Frogmore Cottage, I've realised something - I wouldn't have this any other way.
WATCH: Duchess Meghan's best maternity fashion moments. Post continues after the video...
Meghan and Harry's Royal Baby is about to bring joy not only to them, but to their millions of fans. (Image: Getty)
In a world where the news cycle is often saturated with doom and gloom, such as worrying statistics, political storms and tragic events that can take a deep emotional toll, the news of a brand-new baby being born to parents who are undisputed role models to the masses is beautifully refreshing.
And that's why despite my broken sleep, minor heart attacks and temporary loss of social etiquette, the ordeal is going to be entirely worth it.
There's no denying the birth of Baby Sussex is going to be an historical event - one that I, and millions of others will remember for years to come.
But stripping it all back to its core - the story of the Royal Baby's birth is pure: A mother is about to welcome her first child with a loving husband, and that's something to celebrate.
Stay tuned - you know I'll be ready and waiting.