Meghan Markle Looks Unrecognizable In Never-Before-Seen Holiday Photo

Jan. 26 2018, Updated 5:04 p.m. ET

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Meghan Markle has come a long way and as's exclusive photo proves, like every woman, she had an awkward phase.

Prince Harry's future fiancée Markle is about 13 years old in the picture in which she stood in front of a relative's Christmas tree.

Her life back then was vastly different from this year, when the 36-year-old former Suits star spent Christmas with Britain's royal family!

But the photo, taken several years after her parents Doria Ragland and Thomas Markle Sr. divorced, shows that she always loved the camera.

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Markle has said that she adores Christmas, which she previously spent in her native Los Angeles. "Christmas in my hometown of LA is just the ultimate," she said back in 2015.

Her favorite festive customs included leaving Santa a glass of red wine and a beautiful handwritten note, and making blueberry cornmeal pancakes.

But the ex-actress pushed those rituals aside in order to adopt the long-standing traditions of the royals.

Markle, the first non-married partner to be invited to Sandringham estate, enjoyed a three-day celebration including a congregation at St. Mary Magdalene church, the exchange of gag gifts, games and a traditional turkey lunch.

With her wedding to Harry set for May 19, 2018, Markle's Christmases to come will continue to revolve around the royal family.

"Meghan absolutely lives for Christmas, and has done ever since she was a child," a family told

"She loves giving gifts, writing cards, cooking and being with the people she loves, so it's no surprise that it's a favorite holiday of hers. This year will be extra special. Not just because she's spending it as part of the royal family, but because she'll get to be with Harry!"

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