In hindsight, signs pointed to a royal baby

(CBS News) LONDON -- Ever since Prince William and Kate Middleton said "I will," everyone has been wondering when they would have a baby. On Monday, we got the answer.

Judging from the way she was hopping around playing field hockey at her old school last week, the Duchess of Cambridge did not seem either pregnant or unwell. But now it's official: she's both.

The royal family was forced to announce the pregnancy earlier than they would have liked because Kate, at less than 12 weeks pregnant, has been admitted to King Edward VII Hospital in London with an acute form of morning sickness -- a condition obstetricians like Daghni Rajasingham say is uncomfortable but not worrying, at this stage.

"You can become dehydrated, and the aim of the admission is to rehydrate through intravenous fluids," Rajasingham says.

The great un-asked question in the year-and-a-half since the wedding has always been when the pitter-patter of little royal feet would arrive. Timing was everything.

There would be no baby, royal watchers said, until after Queen Elizabeth II's sixty-years-on-the-throne Diamond Jubilee was over.

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And right on cue lately, the signs have been there. William was given a baby outfit during a recent outing and he said he'd keep it.

Kate recently declined to taste a peanut butter-based sauce for fear, perhaps, of an allergic reaction.

And lately, she's been choosing water, not wine, for royal toasts.

Clearly, children have been part of the plan ever since the engagement.

"I think we'll take it one step at a time," William said after the couple announced their engagement. "But obviously, we want a family, so we'll have to start thinking about that."

But, all being well, a child for William and Kate will not only be a happy occasion, it will make history. For the first time, the gender of this child won't matter. The old law giving preferences to male heirs is being thrown out the window. This child, boy or girl, will be King or Queen -- one day.

The betting is on a June baby.

  • Mark Phillips

    Mark Phillips returned to the CBS News London bureau as a correspondent in 1993. He has covered many major stories since then, including the war in the Balkans, the death of Princess Diana and the weapons inspection conflicts in Iraq.

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