Meghan Markle gave her third interview since stepping back from her senior royal family role to Variety and addressed her experience mourning the Queen for the first time. Of all the royal family, she is the first to speak in-depth about her grieving and relationship with the late monarch.
Of the mourning period generally, Meghan said, “There’s been such an outpouring of love and support. I’m really grateful that I was able to be with my husband to support him, especially during that time. What’s so beautiful is to look at the legacy that his grandmother was able to leave on so many fronts. Certainly, in terms of female leadership, she is the most shining example of what that looks like. I feel deep gratitude to have been able to spend time with her and get to know her. It’s been a complicated time, but my husband, ever the optimist, said, ‘Now she’s reunited with her husband.’”
For Meghan personally, “I’ve reflected on that first official engagement that I had with her, how special that felt. I feel fortunate. And I continue to be proud to have had a nice warmth with the matriarch of the family.”
Variety asked how the family was processing the loss. Meghan made a point to speak about her immediate family rather than the royals in general. “In big moments in life, you get a lot of perspective,” she started. “It makes you wonder what you want to focus your energy on. Right now, we feel energized and excited about all of the things we’ve been building toward. We’re also focused on our foundation. So much of the work we do includes the philanthropic space.”
Meghan said later in the interview that her ideal project for Archewell, her and Prince Harry’s nonprofit, is rooted in love. “So much of how my husband and I see things is through our love story,” she said. “I think that’s what people around the world connected to, especially with our wedding. People love love. I’m not excluded in that sentiment. And our definition of love is really expansive: Partner love, self-love, the love of community and family. We use that as the baseline of the kind of shows and documentaries we want out there.”
Meghan addressed her own acting future, saying she doesn’t intend to go back to acting now. “No. I’m done,” she said. “I guess never say never, but my intention is to absolutely not.”
As for her and Harry’s children Lili and Archie eventually pursuing careers in acting or entertainment, Meghan is very open to it. “I would say, ‘Great!’ [if either told me they wanted a career in entertainment] When you become a parent, you genuinely want your kids to find the things that bring them complete joy. They’re our kids, obviously, and they’re part of a legacy and a tradition and a family that will have other expectations. But I want them to be able to carve out their own path. If it’s the entertainment industry, great. And also, good luck. There are so many people that will talk about what opened the door for my children. But it still takes talent and a lot of grit. We’re creating multidimensional, interesting, kind, creative people. That’s who our kids are.”
You can read Meghan’s full interview here.
Alyssa Bailey is the senior news and strategy editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage of celebrities and royals (particularly Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton). She previously held positions at InStyle and Cosmopolitan. When she’s not working, she loves running around Central Park, making people take #ootd pics of her, and exploring New York City.