The King Who Can’t Part With His Teddy Bear / Demet Cengiz

King Charles III, who ascended the throne of the United Kingdom following the death of Queen Elizabeth II, made history as the longest-serving heir to the throne. The first heir to the throne since the age of four, Charles became king at the age of 73. Charles, who looks around with insecure eyes longing for love, will be crowned at a ceremony on May 6.

Born at Buckingham Palace on November 14, 1948, the first child of Elizabeth II and Prince Philip – who was then a princess – and the first grandson of King George VI, the baby boy was named Charles Philip Arthur George. From the moment he was born, this baby with the surname Mountbatten-Windsor was hailed as the man who would succeed his mother as head of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth. Such a burden for a tiny baby. In 1952, the year his mother ascended the throne, he was proclaimed “the next king” at the age of four. He spent his childhood and youth under heavy responsibilities due to his being the “future king”. This heavy watch lasted 70 years until the death of Queen Elizabeth II on September 8, 2022. He became both the longest-serving heir, and the oldest monarch to ascend the British throne. This watch for the throne had lasted so long that some people suggested that he give up his turn to his son Prince William.

He had to constantly prove herself to an authoritarian and powerful mother, and a father obsessed with education. It was not so easy to be approved by a queen mother. He was tested by centuries of tradition and heavy responsibilities. Yes, he was born into this world as a prince, but no one ever really asked him what he really wanted. Her father decided the education he would receive, whom he would marry, and her mother decided when he should divorce. When he married a woman who captured the heart of the world (Lady Diana), he was again left in the shadows. Perhaps that was why he could not love the mother of his two children, Diana, whom the world admired. Diana was brilliant. She had a shy but powerful light that illuminated everywhere she went. His first love, Camilla? Camilla was not like that; she gave him the motherly love and affection that he so craved but didn’t get, and she did not shine an unnecessary light.

First Heir with a Diploma

Let’s go back to the beginning… to Charles’ childhood. It was announced that Charles, who was raised by a governess at the palace, would go to school in 1955. For the first time, a heir was being sent to school instead of being home-schooled. From 1958 he attended Cheam preparatory school, where his father had been educated, and in 1962 he started boarding at Gordonstoun in North-East Scotland, which was also his father’s alma mater. Not only were his parents physically and emotionally distant, but he was also bullied at Gordonstoun, which was notorious for its strict rules.

In 1966, he studied for two semesters at the Timbertop campus of Geelong Grammar School (Australia). He broke royal tradition for the second time by going straight to university instead of joining the British Armed Forces. In 1967 he was admitted to Trinity College, Cambridge. He studied archaeology and anthropology in the first semester and history in the second semester. In his second year he attended the University of Wales, where he studied Welsh history and language for a semester. He graduated from Cambridge University in 1970 with a Bachelor of Arts degree, becoming the first British heir apparent to obtain a university degree. In 1975, he received a Master of Arts degree from Cambridge.

In his second year at Cambridge, he requested training from the Royal Air Force and learned to fly the Chipmunk in the Cambridge University Squadron. On March 8, 1971, he applied to the Royal Air Force College Cranwell to train as a jet pilot. After his graduation ceremony, he started his naval career in September and served on various warships. He qualified as a helicopter pilot at RNAS Yeovilton, following which he joined 845 Naval Air Squadron, serving on HMS Hermes.

Loyal to His First Love

As a favorite bachelor, Charles attracted a lot of attention in his youth. In 1971, when he was just 23 years old, he met and fell in love with Camilla, whom his family did not approve of. When Charles went overseas with the navy in 1973, he did not tell Camilla to “wait for him”. The young prince was heartbroken when Camilla married Andrew Parker Bowles the same year.

As it is known, Charles married Lady Diana in 1981 in a dream wedding and made the world agenda. Diana captivated not only the people of the United Kingdom but the whole world with a light that went beyond beauty and grace. Charles had fallen in love just once and it was with Camilla, and in her he found the approval, love and affection he was looking for, and she never shone so brightly that she eclipsed him. Those who witnessed Charles and Diana’s courtship would say that Charles was attracted to Diana and that she was in love with the prince. Charles, who married Diana on his father’s suggestion that she was a “worthy royal bride-to-be”, always had his heart and mind at Camilla. So much so that Lady Diana realized the relationship between them before they got married and said, “Even on the honeymoon, there were actually three of us.” Charles has learned to live under a constant barrage of criticism due to his obsession with Camilla. He was a prince who was unfaithful to his wife and infinitely loyal to his first love.

Forced marriages never worked out, scandals festered in the press, unhappy princes and princesses wept in separate rooms in the palaces. Charles, who had married with his father’s say-so, divorced Diana in 1996 on the advice of his mother and the then British prime minister John Major. In 1997, Diana died in a tragic car accident in Paris. Charles was entrusted with the grave task of bringing the body of Diana, the mother of his two children, from Paris to London. Leading a life seeking parental approval, Charles was constantly criticized as an unfaithful husband, and after Diana’s death, he and the Queen were the target of hate speech.

Finally marrying Camilla, whose greatest virtue was to stay in the background, in 2005, Charles was now able to put his private life in order, at the age of 57. Happy for the happiness of his son Prince William and his wife Kate, Charles continues to have difficulties with his younger son Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, who have withdrawn from their royal duties. The fact that Harry and Meghan are constantly giving exclusive interviews, being the subject of documentaries and writing books of their private life is really annoying the king, who has been waiting for the throne for 70 years. The coldness between the family members, who last met at Queen Elizabeth’s funeral, continues. It was last announced that Harry will attend the coronation ceremony on May 6 alone. It is no secret that the king is heartbroken towards his son and daughter-in-law.

Teddy Bear and his Nanny

In a 2019 survey, the rate of those who wanted Charles to be king was 46 percent, while this rate increased to 60 percent in 2021. It would not be surprising if support for King Charles III grew even more after the coronation.

Interested in art, architecture, alternative medicine and sports, King Charles III is also known to be well versed in philosophy and religion. Apart from his private life, his interest in alternative medicine and his hunting, even though he had given it up, were much criticized.

You can really see a battered child in the eyes of the king, who often casts quick and anxious glances around him. Accused of being impulsive and uncontrolled, Charles has some surprising characteristics: He takes his teddy bear, which he has had since childhood, everywhere he goes. Ever since he was a child, he was inseparable from her teddy bear and her nanny Mabel Anderson. And of course his first love, Camilla. Many even compare Camilla to her nanny. The king never goes anywhere without a specially designed toilet seat and an exclusive cook for his diet.

At his coronation, King Charles III is expected to break with tradition and wear a military uniform suitable for the modern world. There will be plenty of chants of “Long live the new king”, but let’s see how long Charles will rule.