President Trump and first lady Melania Trump on the South Lawn of the White House upon their return from Joint Base Andrews in Maryland where they greeted three Americans just released by North Korea, May 10, 2018.
While the first lady's conspicuous absence has become the source of some speculation, with the hashtag #whereismelania trending on Twitter, her communications director says the first lady is doing "really well" and is engaged on internal meetings.
On 14 May, the White House said Mrs Trump, 48, would be admitted to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center near Washington DC for "an embolisation procedure to treat a benign kidney condition".
The first lady had recently launched her initiative to teach kindness to children.
"Once again we find ourselves consumed with a ridiculous non-story when we could be talking about the work the first lady is doing on behalf of children", Grisham said in an email.
While many administrations have sought expert counsel in the past, former Obama advisor and email recipient Evan Medeiros speculated that the thinly-reported information was presented in an attempt to gain positive media attention and "fan tweets". 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.
Nashville Crowd Boos Senator Bob Corker at Donald Trump Rally
Blackburn, a Republican congresswoman, is vying for her party's nomination to replace retiring Corker, a Republican. When Trump introduced Corker at the rally , he was met with audible boos from the audience.
The fact that the first lady has barely been seen throughout May has been a hot topic of conversation on social media. After Stephanie shared her boss's tweet, one person jokingly demanded more, writing, "Could we maybe get a video holding today's paper?"
In her absence, others have stepped in to perform the duties that traditionally fall to the president's spouse. She is one of the most independent first ladies in recent history, several times in the past year separating herself from her husband's travel plans, outings, rallies and, on more than one occasion, motorcades.
She marked Mother's Day and Memorial Day, expressed sympathy to victims of the Santa Fe shooting, and offered thanks to Britt Slabinski, a former navy seal, after he was presented with the Medal of Honor at the White House.