To any royal fan, it’s clear that Meghan Markle‘s life has been filled with ups and downs. From the dizzying heights of her wedding day to the horrific lows of the day of her miscarriage, the public has watched as Meghan has embarked on the difficult journey of becoming a member of the royal family.
One thing’s for sure: being a member of The Firm isn’t always easy. Taking a quick look at the tragic story of Princess Diana makes that clear. With the press constantly hounding Meghan, she’s had to adjust to being in the public eye almost 24/7. She’s also had to give up her old life in America where she was a successful actress. However, despite the downsides of royal life, Meghan has also had some great times in recent years, too. She’s become a mother to Archie and started a new life with her family in the States. Curious to find out more? Here are the best and worst days of Meghan Markle’s life.
Best day: when Harry proposed to Meghan Markle
We think it’s probably safe to say that the day that Prince Harry proposed was one of the happiest of Meghan Markle’s life. This was before she’d realized just how tough life in the public eye would be — all she knew was that she was about to spend the rest of her life with the man she loved.
In their engagement interview, the couple told the adorable story of how Harry proposed. "It happened a few weeks ago, earlier this month, here at our cottage, just a standard typical night for us," Harry said, setting the scene. Meghan added, "Just a cozy night, it was — what were we doing — just roasting chicken." Apparently, they were cooking together when Harry suddenly dropped to one knee. "Just an amazing surprise," Meghan recalled. "It was so sweet and natural and very romantic."
Meghan went on to explain that she was so eager to say yes that she almost interrupted the proposal. "She didn’t even let me finish," Harry remembered. "She said, ‘Can I say yes? Can I say yes?’" How adorable!
Worst day: when the press found out Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were dating
At the beginning of their relationship, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were able to enjoy a fairly normal courtship — falling in love as any couple would, without the constant pressure of the paparazzi. However, when the press caught on to the relationship in 2016, everything changed for Meghan.
As the BBC reported in 2020, the press were quick to pounce on Meghan after the relationship became public. Apparently, Harry was quick to attack the media. He and Meghan were even forced to fight "nightly legal battles to keep defamatory stories out of papers." Stories even emerged of reporters trying to break into Meghan’s home.
As Meghan revealed in a now infamous ITV interview, the press quickly became one of the most difficult things she’d ever dealt with in her life. When she had started dating Harry, her friends had said, "The British tabloids will destroy your life." While she didn’t realize it at the time, her friends ended up being right. From the moment they discovered her relationship with Harry, her life was changed forever — and sadly, not for the better.
Best day: getting cast on ‘Suits’
Before Meghan Markle married into the royal family, she was a successful Hollywood actress. And before that, she was just like any other aspiring actress in Hollywood. She worked a series of odd jobs while auditioning for pilot after pilot, waiting for her big break. She reportedly worked as a freelance calligrapher and even spent time as a model on Deal Or No Deal. She even confessed that she had lied to casting directors in the past to get roles (via Daily Mail).
We think it’s safe to say that when Meghan was cast in Suits, she finally made it as an actor — her dreams had come true. As she wrote in 2016 for Elle, "My mom is sitting in my trailer, on a show in which I am a lead character, and that has a viewership of more than 1.7 million. It’s surreal. We never would have dreamed that this would be my reality." It’s clear that the star was thrilled to have finally made it as an actress.
Worst day: the last day of Meghan Markle’s royal tour of South Africa
During her life as a member of the royal family, Meghan Markle has had some good times and some bad times. One of the hardest experiences seems to have been her trip to South Africa with Prince Harry. At the time, she had just given birth to Archie, so, she was, quite understandably, completely exhausted. On the final day of the tour, Meghan opened up about her mental health during an ITV interview, famously revealing she wasn’t okay.
In an appearance on the Teenager Therapy podcast (via Harper’s Bazaar) one year later, Meghan spoke about the day of the interview. "We were on a tour in South Africa and on the last day of the tour, man I was tired." She went on, "I was just about to give Archie a bath … I was exhausted." Harry chimed in, "She was still breastfeeding at the time." Apparently, she was even feeding Archie between engagements. As Meghan went on to explain, the famous interview was the result of her exhaustion — it’s safe to say that Meghan would look back on that tour with not-so-fond memories.
Best day: the royal wedding
Meghan Markle’s wedding to Prince Harry was easily one of the biggest weddings in royal history. For Meghan, the wedding was her chance to take the next step with Harry. On the day, Harry and Meghan wrote on Instagram, "Thank you for all of the love and support from so many of you around the world. Each of you made this day even more meaningful." It’s clear that it was a day neither will ever forget (via Good Morning America).
Meghan explained her side of the story in an audio guide, as reported by Cosmopolitan. "A great level of detail went into the planning of our wedding day," she said. "We knew how large the scale of the event would be, so in making choices that were really personal and meaningful, it could make the whole experience feel intimate." Meghan’s wedding dress even contained a scrap of fabric from the outfit she wore on her first date with Harry. Sounds like this couple put a lot of thought into their wedding day — and that the day meant a lot to them both!
Worst day: when Meghan Markle had a miscarriage after the birth of Archie
In 2020, Meghan Markle wrote a remarkable piece for the New York Times, in which she opened up about her devastating miscarriage that same year. Apparently, the miscarriage happened as she was changing her first son, Archie’s diaper. "After changing his diaper, I felt a sharp cramp. I dropped to the floor with him in my arms," she wrote, "humming a lullaby to keep us both calm, the cheerful tune a stark contrast to my sense that something was not right."
In the article, Meghan went on to describe how horrible the miscarriage was for her. "Losing a child means carrying an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by few." She went on to explain that the event taught her the stark reality about just how frequent miscarriages really are — in fact, ten to 20 percent of women experience them, as she wrote. We think it’s clear that the day she lost this second child was one of the worst of her life.
Best day: giving birth to Archie
In 2019, Meghan Markle gave birth to her first child, Archie. It’s clear that Meghan is a doting mother — and Archie’s birth has most certainly changed her life. It’s safe to say that May 7, 2019, was one of the best days of her life, as she welcomed her son into the world. As Prince Harry said at the time, "It’s been the most amazing experience I could ever have possibly imagined" (via The Sun).
During Fortune‘s virtual summit in 2020, she explained just how much she had changed since becoming a mother. "It makes you more courageous, it makes you so concerned for the world they’re going to inherit," she said (via People). As she went on to explain, motherhood had made her begin to think more seriously about how she would make the world a better place for her son. "I wouldn’t be able to feel proud of myself as a mom if I didn’t know that I wasn’t doing my part to make it a better place for him," she said. It sounds like Meghan’s life really did change for the better with the birth of Archie.
Worst day: when Meghan Markle’s father decided not to attend her wedding
Meghan Markle has had a pretty complicated relationship with her father, Thomas Markle. In an essay for Elle in 2016, Meghan called him "the most hardworking father." However, in the lead-up to Meghan’s wedding, things got quite tense between Meghan and her father. He reportedly staged paparazzi photos, which are said to have embarrassed Meghan and the royal family.
Shortly after this, he suffered a heart attack, and it was announced two days before the big day that he would be unable to attend his daughter’s wedding. Meghan wrote at the time, "Sadly, my father will not be attending our wedding. I have always cared for my father and hope he can be given the space he needs to focus on his health." At the time, an announcement from Kensington Palace said, "This is a deeply personal moment for Ms. Markle in the days before her wedding." It’s clear that it was heartbreaking for the bride-to-be to realize that her father wouldn’t be able to walk her down the aisle — even if his recent mistakes with the press had made their relationship more complicated (via The Sun).
Best day: moving to the States
After a difficult few years working as a full-time member of the royal family, Meghan Markle stepped back from royal life, moving with her family first to Canada and then back to the States. For Meghan, this meant some much-needed respite and the chance of a more normal life. In an interview with ET Canada, in 2020, Meghan said, "It’s good to be home."
Not only did Meghan return to her old country, she also got to return to her old way of life. Later in 2020, it was announced that Meghan and Harry would take on a huge producing deal with Netflix — Meghan would be returning to her old world of film and TV. It seems that the family’s move away from the royal family and their return to the United States has been a huge positive for Meghan. By the sounds of things, her future looks a lot more hopeful than it once did.
Worst day: Meghan Markle’s final royal engagement
Even though it’s no secret that royal life wasn’t exactly what Meghan Markle hoped it would be, it’s clear that she found it hard to say goodbye to her husband’s family and traditions. In fact, the day of her final royal engagements was probably one of the hardest days of her life. According to a journalist from Harper’s Bazaar, Meghan’s final official event came the day before the couple’s big move across the Atlantic. As the journalist revealed, Meghan was close to tears on the day. As she put it, "Tears glisten in those bright friendly eyes that have charmed and endeared so many during recent days" (via Evening Standard).
In the book Finding Freedom, royal reporters Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand went into more detail about the emotional days prior to Meghan and Prince Harry’s departure. Apparently, after a final event, Meghan couldn’t hold in the emotions any more and apparently cried in front of a few reporters. "’I can’t believe this is it,’ [Meghan] said, hugging one of the young female aides she had become close with" (via SheKnows). It’s evident that leaving the royal family was incredibly difficult for Meghan.
Best day: traveling to Rwanda for UN Women
Before marrying into the royal family, Meghan Markle was an actress — but she was also an activist who was extremely involved in charity work. In a 2016 essay for Elle, Meghan explained how rewarding and important her philanthropy had been for her. She recalled how in 2015, she had traveled to a refugee camp in Rwanda as a UN Women advocate. "I had a week of meetings with female parliamentarians in the city’s capital, Kigali, celebrating the fact that 64 percent of the Rwandan government are women," she said. Toward the end of her trip, she received an invitation to the BAFTA awards, and she went on to explain that she found it hard to accept as it felt like such a different world to Rwanda.
It’s clear that for Meghan, traveling around the world was a crucial part of building her sense of self-worth. As she put it, "When I share my photos with my friends, they note that I never look happier that I do when I am on field missions. It’s a different smile than the one for the paparazzi — it doesn’t require any retouching."
Worst day: when Meghan Markle had to quit acting
Falling in love with Prince Harry must have been a bittersweet experience for Meghan Markle. While she and her husband are clearly very happy together, marrying into the royal family did come with some downsides. In addition to the downside of the constant press attention, Meghan also gave up her acting career when she married Harry.
Meghan explained that her decision to quit her profession wasn’t entirely sad in her engagement interview. "What’s been really exciting, as we talk about this as the transition out of my career … is that the causes that have been very important to me, I can focus even more energy on," she said.
However, since stepping back from the royal family, Meghan has reportedly begun to think about returning to the world of acting. As a friend told The Sun, "At the moment she is loving spending time with Archie and settling into her new life with Harry back home in Canada." They added, "But Meghan remains hugely ambitious and is very open minded to a return to acting which is what she knows, loves, and does best." Sounds like she’s really missed performing!
Best day: Meghan Markle’s first date with Harry
Anyone who sees Meghan Markle and Prince Harry together has to admit that they are totally in love. As Harry once said, he knew that Meghan was the one from their first date — but what about Meghan? According to the book Finding Freedom by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand (via Sky), the date lasted three hours — and they even arranged their second date for the very next night!
As the book reads, "’Almost immediately they were almost obsessed with each other,’" a friend said." At the end of the date, the couple kept things PG, with "no goodbye kiss, no expectation" — but both were sure they’d see each other again. Apparently, after their first date, Meghan called a friend to say, "Do I sound crazy when I say this could have legs?" It sounds like Meghan was smitten from day one! And there’s no doubt about it — her first date with Harry certainly changed her life for the better!
Worst day: watching the pain involved as BLM unfolded in the States
In 2020, protests erupted around the world in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. There were also counter-protests in some areas. It was a violent, dangerous, and upsetting time for many people, particularly in the United States. For Meghan Markle, the BLM movement was especially difficult to observe. In an interview with 19thNews, Meghan said, "It was so sad to see where our country was in that moment."
While she found the division and racism in the country hard to watch, she was able to take some positives from the movement. "If there’s any silver lining in that, I would say that in the weeks after the murder of George Floyd, in the peaceful protests that you were seeing, in the voices that were coming out, in the way that people were actually owning their role … it shifted from sadness to a feeling of absolute inspiration, because I can see that the tide is turning" (via Mirror).