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'I left the hospital in yoga pants:' Moms, don't stress, we all can't be Duchess Meghan

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'I left the hospital in yoga pants:' Moms, don't stress, we all can't be Duchess Meghan

Duchess Meghan Markle was dressed to magnificence when she introduced her baby boy, but this mom says it's OK if that wasn't you. 'Embrace the mess.'

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Three days after giving birth to my youngest son last fall, I left the hospital in yoga pants, a tank top and flip flops.

A bevy of photographers were not waiting for me. Why would they be? I'm not a celebrity. Why would anyone care what I look like while cuddling a newborn?

This week, Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan Markle introduced their 3-day-old son to the world. Like her sister-in-law Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, Meghan was dressed to magnificence as she introduced her baby boy.

Teach kids this bravery trick. Tell them to always notice the color of a person's eyes. Making eye contact will help a hesitant child appear more confident and will help any kid to be more assertive and less likely to be picked on.

Yes, this is her job. But no woman should feel pressured to look perfect just hours into motherhood. (Nor should she feel obligated to wear heels on her swollen feet.)

LinkedInMeghan and Prince Harry’s baby revealed: See the adorable photos!

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Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON140Meet the newest royal! Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, introduced their newborn baby boy in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019. Dominic Lipinski, AP

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Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA04TBaby Sussex was born May 6, 2019 at 5:26 a.m. DOMINIC LIPINSKI, AFP/Getty Images

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Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan pose with their newborn son during a photocall in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019 .An overjoyed Harry and Meghan have not yet revealed a name. WPA Pool/ Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON211Baby Sussex's parents are in a state of bliss. Dominic Lipinski, AP

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WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose with their newborn son during a photocall in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019 in Windsor, England. The Duchess of Sussex gave birth at 05:26 on Monday 06 May, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 775338628 ORIG FILE ID: 1142164440New mom Meghan places a hand on her newborn son. WPA Pool, Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA0B8Meghan smiles at husband Prince Harry. The couple wed May 19, 2018, about a year before the baby's arrival. DOMINIC LIPINSKI, AFP/Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA01EWhen introducing his son, Prince Harry gushed, "Parenting is amazing." DOMINIC LIPINSKI, AFP/Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON109Meghan shared the feeling of elation. "It's magic. It’s pretty amazing. I mean, I have the two best guys in the world, so I’m really happy," she said. Dominic Lipinski, AP

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Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA072Showing off his firstborn to photographers, Prince Harry joked that his son has "a little bit of facial hair." DOMINIC LIPINSKI, AFP/Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON113Meghan said before greeting the media, the family bumped into Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Dominic Lipinski, AP

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Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON111

Prince Harry beams as a new father. Dominic Lipinski, AP

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Create tech-free zones. Keep family mealtimes, other family and social gatherings, and children's bedrooms screen free. Turn off televisions that you aren't watching, because background TV can get in the way of face-to-face time with kids. Recharge devices overnight—outside your child's bedroom to help him or her avoid the temptation to use them when they should be sleeping. These changes encourage more family time, healthier eating habits, and better sleep.

Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, arrive for a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON112

Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, arrive for a photocall with their newborn baby. Dominic Lipinski, AP

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Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA08B

Prince Harry and Meghan walk toward the media to introduce their bundle of joy. DOMINIC LIPINSKI, AFP/Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA08A

When asked who their son looked like, Meghan said, "We’re still trying to figure that out.” DOMINIC LIPINSKI, AFP/Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA01F

Prince Harry said the first few days of parenthood have them "so thrilled." DOMINIC LIPINSKI, AFP/Getty Images

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WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose with their newborn son during a photocall in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019 in Windsor, England. The Duchess of Sussex gave birth at 05:26 on Monday 06 May, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 775338628 ORIG FILE ID: 1142161858

When describing her son's demeanor, Meghan said he's "calm," adding: "He’s just been the dream." WPA Pool, Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON113

Before departing, Meghan said, “Thank you everybody for the well wishes and the kindness. It just means so much.” Dominic Lipinski, AP

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Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan of Sussex pose with their newborn son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019.

What a lovely family. WPA Pool, Getty Images

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Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, leaves after a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON141

The parents depart with their newborn, undoubtedly going to enjoy more baby bliss. Dominic Lipinski, AP

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  • Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON1401 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA04T2 of 19
  • Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan pose with their newborn son during a photocall in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019 .3 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON2114 of 19
  • WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose with their newborn son during a photocall in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019 in Windsor, England. The Duchess of Sussex gave birth at 05:26 on Monday 06 May, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 775338628 ORIG FILE ID: 11421644405 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA0B86 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA01E7 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON1098 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA0729 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON11310 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON11111 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, arrive for a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON11212 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA08B13 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA08A14 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose for a photo with their newborn baby son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on May 8, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images ORIG FILE ID: AFP_1GA01F15 of 19
  • WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose with their newborn son during a photocall in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019 in Windsor, England. The Duchess of Sussex gave birth at 05:26 on Monday 06 May, 2019. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 775338628 ORIG FILE ID: 114216185816 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON11317 of 19
  • Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan of Sussex pose with their newborn son in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019.18 of 19
  • Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, leaves after a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019. Baby Sussex was born Monday at 5:26 a.m. (0426 GMT; 12:26 a.m. EDT) at an as-yet-undisclosed location. An overjoyed Harry said he and Meghan are "thinking" about names. (Dominic Lipinski/Pool via AP) ORG XMIT: LON14119 of 19

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I can't begin to tell you how often new, exhausted mothers share their frustrations as they fall short on unreal expectations.

They fret because their newborn doesn't sleep through the night.

They worry because their baby won't easily rise to eat from a bottle or breast.

They panic when their child will only sleep while being held.

They stress because they've set all household chores aside to tend to their newborn.

And of course, they feel ashamed when baby weight doesn't magically dissolve after giving birth.

It's. All. OK.

Baby will sleep...eventually. And baby will eat when hungry. The chores can wait. Soon enough, you'll be reminiscing about those early sleepless nights, wearing one single outfit for days straight and twice weekly showers.

Don't clip your child's wings. Your toddler's mission in life is to gain independence. So when she's developmentally capable of putting her toys away, clearing her plate from the table, and dressing herself, let her. Giving a child responsibility is good for her self-esteem (and your sanity!).

Try not to compare yourself with others. Pay no attention to the snapshot of life other mothers share on social media.

Here's a not-so-well kept secret: It's not reality.

People share moments they want you to see: A well-groomed family portrait, siblings cuddling, a mess-free kitchen, a Pinterest-worthy nursery.

You rarely see the meltdowns, the clutter, half-cooked meals abandoned on the counter.

Embrace the mess. Give yourself grace. Wear your pajamas to the store with your newborn in tow. (People will comment on your adorable child, not your outfit.)

It will pass soon enough and you'll be happier for it. Heels and all.

VFREILE@Gannett.com

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