There was a very special surprise in store for parents Rebecca Attwood and John Gill when none other than the Duchess of Cambridge made an unexpected virtual call to congratulate them on the birth of their beautiful son Max who they welcomed into the world just sixteen hours earlier.
"Hello! Very nice to meet you! This is definitely a first, I think. He is so sweet. Ah, congratulations!" Kate added: "My goodness, you must be exhausted."
The meeting came during Kate's video chat with midwives at Kingston Hospital's maternity unit, where she had a work placement for two days last November.
'Rebecca, from Raynes Park, south west London, said afterwards: "Having a baby is an extraordinary experience at any time, but having one during lockdown and then having a surprise conversation with the Duchess of Cambridge after two hours' sleep was particularly surreal! "The Duchess asked us about having a baby at such an unusual time, and our experience on the maternity ward was that all the midwives made it as normal as possible – apart from the masks, it was exactly the same as when we had our first son, Rafe, in 2015. The midwives were amazing on both occasions."'
Sam Frewin, lead midwife at the Birth Centre & Better Births, told the Duchess: "I'm smiling, can you tell?" "With your eyes, I can," laughed Kate.
Ahead of Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week, the Duchess also spoke with leading experts in the sector, midwives, health visitors and parents during a video chat from Anmer Hall last week.
More from the Telegraph:
'Addressing concerns that women may fear putting pressure on an NHS which is already trying to cope with coronavirus, Jennifer Tshibamba, a midwife at Kingston Hospital, told her: "We want women to know we’re still here, we’re still open."
"Parents do need to go out and reach out to those who can support them, particularly those who can provide knowledgeable resources as well," said the Duchess.
"We've heard it from the frontline workers, for those who are struggling, they don't feel they can reach out because they feel guilty for doing it, which is extraordinary to hear. With new mums and parents and families, they don't want to feel like they're overburdening but it is so important to reach out and ask for help when you do need it."'
Hello! reports: "Director of Midwifery Gina Brockwell said of Kate's call: "She's clearly very interested in maternity services. She spent quite a long time with us back in November so really seemed to have a good understanding of our role, but also around the challenges of having a baby and a new family and the raising of people's awareness of the sorts of challenges that people have to go through. So it's an honour, actually, that she wanted to come back again."
Kate spoke of the importance of talking to others in the same situation. "You speak to six mums and all of you realise you are going through the same thing. Before that, you're worried that actually what you're experiencing, you're the only one who's going through it. And it's exactly the same for new mums whether through pregnancy or with a newborn baby, you know, you feel that you're the only one actually experiencing something. But actually to be able to share it in whatever way, whether it's on the phone, through social media, in any form actually - if you have got access to it, it does provide that normality and normalising of some of these anxieties and these worries."
To mark this year's Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week in very different circumstances, a revised plan was decided to focus on "supporting mums during difficult times, which will enable us to provide a supportive platform where we can reassure families and signpost them to vital resources and safe support which is what people need most at this time". Simple available tips and resources will be shared each day to enable people to find the information they need quickly.
For Kate's first look, she wore Tabitha Webb's Jessie Knit in Blue and White Chevron (with thanks to Middleton Maven). The £275 piece is described: "This gorgeous new knit in a baby blue wool and cashmere mix chevron design is just the perfect little spring addition to your wardrobe."
The Royal Ladies via Twitter correctly noted the Duchess wore her Boden Aurora dress for her second video call. We first saw the dress when the Cambridges' Christmas card for 2019 was shared.
The blue print dress is described: "This wrap midi dress is all about boho luxe, right down to the floaty tiered skirt, three-quarter-length sleeves and crinkle viscose fabric."
I very much enjoyed the lengthier video shared tonight; it gives us a good sense of the conversations the Duchess had and their purpose - very much like a round-table discussion during a typical engagement. Those working in midwifery and supporting expectant mums are doing tremendous work amidst enormous challenges. It was excellent to see Kate highlighting their efforts and asking them about their experiences.