The Countess of Wessex opens up about her mother-in-law, Queen Elizabeth

In her first interview since 2001, the Countess of Wessex has opened up to Harper’s Bazaar UK about her relationship with her mother-in-law — Queen Elizabeth. Sophie Rhys-Jones, who married Prince Edward in 1999, spoke candidly with the magazine ahead of her 50 th birthday on January 20.

Sophie opened up for the first time in almost 14 years

Over the years, the royal has learned many life lessons from the Queen. “It doesn’t matter how tired you are – carry on,” the Countess explained. “In the early days, I used to rush around as quickly as I could, but when you observe the Queen, she does things in such a measured way, and I hope I’ve learnt to try not to bounce into the room, but do things in a slightly more elegant way.”

The Queen and Countess get along extremely well

Queen Elizabeth, 88, also has a way of showing that every discussion matters. Sophie continued, “It’s hard to make people feel that the conversation you’ve had with them was worthwhile, but the Queen is very good at that – she makes everybody feel very special.”

Lucky for Prince Edward’s wife and the mother of two, she has often been described as “the Queen’s favorite,” as they both share a passion for horses and military history. They also have had “long and meaningful talks” together throughout the time Sophie has been in the family.

Prince Edward and Sophie have been married since 1999

We wonder what Queen Elizabeth will get her for her upcoming birthday.