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Sinead Ryan: I don't envy Kate, she's about to wave goodbye to normal life

Even on a big night out most of us only have to consider a few things: do these shoes go with this dress? Hair up or down? Will I just wear jeans and a nice top instead?

After April 29, for one young lady there will no longer be anything that counts as a small decision. When Miss Catherine Middleton becomes The Princess William (or whatever title the queen bestows on her), every single thought she puts into every single thing will be pored over, analysed and copied.

She is already wearing Diana's ring; marrying his son and using the same wedding carriage. Comparisons are not only inevitable but tiresomely obvious.

Unlike the rest of us who can get away with looking a bit hairy after a night out, or a minor fashion faux pas, Catherine will never, ever be allowed to make a mistake.

To do so is to invite ridicule from every newspaper, magazine and television station forever and a day, for the rest of her life. So despite the life of luxury which she is joining, I feel sorry for the girl.

She doesn't have Diana's naivete. After all, she's 10 years older than her mother-in-law was when she married. Nor is she marrying the immediate heir to the throne.

This allows her some breathing space to get her head around her new life.

She will, however, be scrutinised down to her fingernails. Every tiny choice that you and I take for granted -- what shade of lipstick to wear; whether we should get our hair cut; if we'll wear a red jacket for a splash of colour -- will be dissected and parsed for statements, intentional or otherwise.

Kate recently wore a Burberry coat on a trip to Belfast: it sold out online in a few hours. At €600 a pop this is no mean feat. A Tesco replica selling at €25 vanished from all its stores within 24 hours.

A cobbled-together cheap fabric slip she wore at a university charity event when she first met William sold last week for €76,000. Its guide price had been €8,000-€10,000. It cost a fiver to make.

"Is Kate trying to say something?", they'll ask when she appears with a new hairstyle. God help her the first day she turns out in anything other than her usual fitted garments -- "She's pregnant!", they'll scream.

In fact, baby-watching will be the new Royal sport after the wedding day. Any announcement taking longer than the requisite three months will raise questions about fertility, ability to conceive and a whole host of embarrassing, intimate conversations that none of the rest of us have to bear.

She can kiss goodbye to any kind of normality. Yes, yes, she's getting a palace, an endless income stream and for all that will be asked to turn up at charity events and cut a few ribbons. But I don't envy her.

When Diana's brother Charles Spencer delivered the eulogy at her funeral, he called her the "most hunted" of people. He was right. Even though a drunk driver caused her death, the constant chasing by paparazzi, intent only on their next meal ticket photographed, aided and abetted her demise.

Kate will be more protected. But she simply will not be able to walk outside her front door -- ever -- without looking top notch. Just think of the pressure of that. Now, of course, she'll most likely be spared the last-minute dash to the shops for a paper and a pint of milk, but there'll be no "bad hair day" worth having.

Her hair and makeup will have to be immaculate, her clothing choices carefully worked out and her designers chosen for Britishness, without a hint of bias. Spend too much and republicans start shouting about the cost of monarchy. Too little, and she's a cheap-skate. Every word out of her mouth will be discussed -- her tone, inflection and stance. Does she look bored, excited, joyful, sad ... and what does it all mean.

So while Kate's making the final wedding preparations for next month, it's only the beginning.

She's managed to keep the details of her dress under wraps so far. It will probably be the last time she'll have the pleasure of a secret.