Unseen for weeks, Melania Trump tweets she’s OK

Darlene Superville
Associated Press

Washington – After nearly three weeks out of sight, Melania Trump tried Wednesday to put to rest speculation about her health and even her whereabouts as she continues to recover from medical treatment for a kidney condition. It didn’t completely work.

Mrs. Trump tweeted that she’s “feeling great” and is at the White House working hard for children and American families. But she still didn’t make a public appearance, leaving some skeptics still wondering about her condition and plenty more.

The first lady’s tweet landed while her husband was participating in a White House event that seemed tailor-made for a first lady, as famous athletes joined President Donald Trump and his daughter and senior adviser Ivanka Trump on the South Lawn to promote youth sports and fitness.

“I see the media is working overtime speculating where I am & what I’m doing,” Mrs. Trump said on Twitter. “Rest assured, I’m here at the @WhiteHouse w my family, feeling great, & working hard on behalf of children & the American people!”

The first lady’s absence from public view has spawned all sorts of wild theories on social media and elsewhere: Has she moved back to Trump Tower in New York City? Is she cooperating with the special counsel’s Russia investigation? Is her health in jeopardy? Has she entered the witness protection program? And so on.

Mrs. Trump has not appeared in public since the wee hours of May 10, when she accompanied the president to a military base in Maryland to welcome home three Americans who had been released from detention in North Korea.

Four days later, the White House announced that the 48-year-old first lady had successfully undergone an “embolization” procedure to treat a benign kidney condition, and that there were no complications. She spent five nights at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in nearby Bethesda, Maryland. Some doctors familiar with the procedure but not involved in her care said people treated with embolization typically are sent home the same day or the next.

First ladies are under no obligation to make their medical histories public, and the White House has said nothing more about Mrs. Trump’s condition.

The first lady’s longtime friend, Paolo Zampolli, thinks “she wanted to spend some quality time with her family.”

Her spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, said the first lady has been meeting with her staff on the “Be Best” initiative and working on upcoming projects like the annual White House picnic for members of Congress in June.