To be a July child: the struggles and the advantages

Ever since the world learned that the Royal Baby is to be born in July, I was ecstatic. I know there are already a few royal July children (young and old) but this baby is different. (S)he is the grandchild of my favourite princess, Diana, Princess of Wales. I watched the Royal Wedding of his/ her parents, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. I admire his/her grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, who is queen of my country as well – and, coincidentally, born the same year as one of my grandmothers. Whereas I had not even existed when Princes William and Harry were born, this is the first time I’ll ‘witness’ the birth of a royal heir(ess) to the throne, who will share my birth month. I just wanted something in common with this Royal Baby, be the child a boy or a girl.

Prior to the announcement on Monday, no one seemed to really talk about July kids. I knew we’re all born differently but I didn’t think that our birth month really affected us. Now there are daily articles and blog posts of info and tips on raising/having/being a July child popping out. I am learning a lot about myself and why things happened the way they did! Certainly, every July child is different and most of the ones I knew always seemed to fare far better than I had. Perhaps it had to do with the way they were raised too. In Rosie Murray-West’s Kate Middleton: Welcome to the summer baby club in The Telegraph, I learned the following:

  • “Summerborn children are the youngest in their school years, and research shows that they carry this burden with them for the rest of their lives.”
  • “They also have lower confidence in their academic ability and are more likely to report being unhappy and bullied at school.”

‘That’s me!’ I thought. Although I was not the youngest (there were usually a few Sept-Dec babies born the same year who skipped a grade), I certainly felt like the snail or tortoise that trailed behind everyone else. A real late bloomer. Today, when I talk about how much I’d hated school, most of my friends can’t seem to understand me. I hated Primary 3 – Grade 7 for 2-3 main reasons: 1) HW and school work. I hardly understood what was going on! 2) Mean girls. 3) Some intimidating teachers! Lack of confidence probably allowed bullies to take advantage of my vulnerability, and, being a sensitive child, I became very unhappy.

This is why I don’t like thinking about my childhood. 😉

Well, that’s the downside of being a July child. Oh and not having any school friends for a birthday party. Nonetheless, I still loved being a summer child when the sun’s out and there are lots of free time (= freedom!) to play. Honestly, summers were the only favourite part of my childhood.

Before you think that it’s not good to have a summer baby, The Mirror points out that  summer bab[ies] ‘ha[ve] less chance of being teenage tearaway[s].’  This is true of me, for one. 🙂

Ms Murray-West provided the Duchess with tips on how to raise a summer baby, with which I completely agree:

  • “Complaints from your child about not being as quick as their friends need to be countered, quickly, with something that they are good at.” – Very important to boost one’s confidence!
  • “Extra curricular activities are good for this – especially if it is something rare that none of their friends have ever tried.” – I certainly excelled at my extra curricular activities more than at my academics!
  • “Drama classes are the tried and tested confidence builder.” – I’ve always enjoyed drama but I didn’t get into it until Gr 10. I think it transformed me quite a bit since then!

I have to thank my parents for encouraging me. Without their encouragement and prayer support, I wouldn’t have come thus far. I feel that Duke, another summer child, and Duchess will make wonderful, patient, and caring parents.

Based on the likelihood of a mid-July birth, I’ve also learned this about myself!

‘If [the Royal Baby is] born between 14th-22nd, (s)he will have royal style but could also be moody, shy & even temperamental.’ – Russell Grant

I conclude that I love being a July child and I have wonderful July-born friends too. Wouldn’t change my birthday for the world! 🙂