The prince and the former "Suits" actress led several royal "firsts" when they became parents for the first time.
Here are all the ways the rockstar British royals bucked Buckingham Palace protocol as they paved the way for the awaited birth.
They were jet-setting expecting parents
While royal protocol dictates that pregnant members of the family typically don't travel overseas, that didn't slow down Duchess Meghan one bit — she actually announced her pregnancy while in Australia and Tonga with Prince Harry.
She had a bit of a wardrobe malfunction
Whoops! While stepping out for her and Prince Harry's tour Down Under — and just days after announcing they were expecting — Duchess Meghan accidentally showed a bit too much when her blue skirt turned sheer in the bright lights of flashbulbs and the hot sun.
Duchess Meghan went to the dark side
Duchess Meghan sported a dark manicure when she made a surprise appearance at the British Fashion Awards in December 2018. The American-born beauty sported black nail polish to match her one-shoulder gown. Queen Elizabeth II reportedly finds dark polish "vulgar" and prefers nude or sheer shades.
Duchess Meghan eschewed tights on a night out
What pregnant woman wants to be constricted by hosiery? Duchess Meghan rocked more dark polish, this time on her toes, and skipped stockings in favor of open-toed heels for a night out with Prince Harry to see Cirque de Soleil in January.
She considered an American nanny
While Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry haven't yet introduced their royal baby's caretakers, an insider previously speculated that the American-born former actress would likely embrace a nanny from her own side of the pond.
“Meghan and Harry have clear ideas on how to bring up their children,” a source said. “Meghan was clear in telling recruiters she favors an American over a Brit and wants them to feel part of the family rather than a uniformed member of staff. That is important to her. She’s never hidden the fact she is fiercely proud of her American roots. They are keen to explore the possibility of a male nanny.”
Her maternity style was fit for a star
Who needs muumuus or empire waists? Duchess Meghan proudly put her baby bump on display in form-fitting dresses during her pregnancy, some of which had short hemlines to put her — once more — oft stockingless stems at center stage.
She had a baby shower
Duchess Meghan's famous BFF, Serena Williams, threw her a baby shower in New York City in February. Other famous attendees included Amal Clooney, Gayle King, stylist Jessica Mulroney and Meghan's former "Suits" co-star Abigail Spencer. Royal experts speculated that Prince William would have been miffed at the display of wealth demonstrated at the star-studded celebration of Baby Sussex, but no taxpayer funds were used for the party.
She feuded with her family
Duchess Meghan reportedly has not reconciled with her estranged father, Thomas Markle, nor her half-sister, Samantha Markle, since before her pregnancy. Royal experts speculated that Thomas may never meet his grandchild, though he sent the Sussexes well wishes after the baby boy was born, and that the duchess was solely focused on motherhood.
She allegedly shunned the queen's doctors
Duchess Meghan is said to have brought in her own medical team for a home birth, much unlike sister-in-law Kate Middleton, who gave birth at the Lindo Wing at St. Mary's Hospital in Paddington, London. Sources were "baffled" at why Duchess Meghan wouldn't have used Queen Elizabeth II's royal OB-GYNs. It's been speculated that she had a home birth at Frogmore Cottage, though sources claimed a helicopter was at the ready should Duchess Meghan have needed to be hospitalized.
They kept their birth plans quiet
The only birth plans announced for Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry's royal baby were that the birth plans would be kept private.
“Their Royal Highnesses have taken a personal decision to keep the plans around the arrival of their baby private," the palace said in a statement. "The Duke and Duchess look forward to sharing the exciting news with everyone once they have had an opportunity to celebrate privately as a new family.”
The privacy the Sussexes requested and enacted didn't sit well with some members of the press. “They’re basically conducting the birth in virtual secrecy. I think it’s a bit foolish,” longtime royal reporter Duncan Larcombe previously griped. “Harry absolutely hates being the subject of speculation, and this just shows his petulance to the media ... it’s just a shame.”
They didn't put on a post-labor parade
After Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan welcomed their son, she did not pose for photos just hours after delivering the baby. Prince Harry told press that they'd scheduled a debut for their bundle of joy for two days after his birth, and sources previously indicated that the practice of putting on a show just after delivering a child wasn't the Duchess of Sussex's cup of tea.
Royal expert Katie Nicholl previously told Fox News that Duchess Meghan wasn't under the same pressures as Kate Middleton, noting that the birth plans were likely Prince Harry's idea. “It doesn’t surprise me their plans are very different from the Duchess of Cambridge [Kate Middleton] or even his mother, Princess Diana,” Nicholl said. “The couple has been doing things very differently, so it’s to be expected we’re not going to get the same carefully stage-managed pictures of the new threesome outside the hospital.”