The news on Wednesday, January 17, of Kate, Princess of Wales' "serious" abdominal surgery convalescence, and King Charles III's planned prostate procedure, has sent Prince William reeling. All eyes are on the heir to the British throne in what has become an "unprecedented" 24-hour moment in the British monarchy as two senior royals experience major surgeries.
Not since the death of Queen Elizabeth II on September 8, 2022, has the Crown experienced such an unstable moment, even with the numerous Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, and Prince Andrew scandals since, one royal insider spilled.
Although His Majesty's operation planned for next week is rumored to be "minimally invasive" and "routine," it is the "concerning" and "odd" condition of William's immensely popular wife that has royal watchers on edge.
"It's going to be a long stay in hospital afterward — these days they get the patients out of hospital as soon as possible back on their feet," royal journalist Michael Cole, who has covered the royal family for decades, told an outlet. "So that also does indicate the seriousness of the nature of whatever it is that is ailing her."
When asked during an interview why the news was so "secretive" and "sudden" on the part of Kensington Palace, Cole added: "What's the point of announcing it beforehand? It will only create speculation."
He continued: "And I'm sure the clinic didn't want hordes of cameramen around the doors. And I'm certainly sure that the Princess of Wales, because this is a very private matter as far as she's concerned and her husband's concerned, wouldn't want that. The fact is, it's happened. It happened yesterday, [and] they've announced it today. I think that that is entirely commendable and right."
This morning, the Prince of Wales was spotted leaving the private, London Clinic, where Her Royal Highness will spend the next 10-13 days being monitored post-op. It is also being reported that the future queen's parents, Michael and Carole Middleton, and her sister, Pippa, have regularly been by her side.
It is unknown if the King and Queen Camilla will visit the Princess of Wales or if any of her three children will be brought into the hospital.
The palace's official statement on Tuesday read: "Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales was admitted to The London Clinic yesterday for planned abdominal surgery. The surgery was successful and it is expected that she will remain in hospital for ten to fourteen days, before returning home to continue her recovery. Based on the current medical advice, she is unlikely to return to public duties until after Easter."
The future queen has not been seen in public since Christmas Day, 2023.
GBN spoke with Cole.