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Though the royal family has made no official announcement regarding Kate Middleton’s return to public life, over the weekend, there was a glimmer of hope that the Princess of Wales might soon step back into the spotlight.

Kate was spotted shopping near Adelaide Cottage, her home in Windsor.

There’s only one brief video of the excursion, but the news that Kate was out and about and seemingly in good spirits was enough to reverse the tide of pessimism that’s been rising for several weeks now.

On social media, conflicting theories about Kate’s absence from public life have been circulating nonstop.

Catherine, Princess Of Wales attends the opening of Evelina London's new children's day surgery unit on December 05, 2023 in London, England.
Catherine, Princess Of Wales attends the opening of Evelina London’s new children’s day surgery unit on December 05, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

But the likeliest theory is that the hiatus has to do with the unspecified abdominal surgery that Kate underwent in January.

At the time of the procedure, Kensington Palace issued a statement assuring the public that Kate’s affliction was non-cancer-related and that she would return to work sometime after Easter.

Kate Middleton: When Will She Return to Public Life?

Now, however, a new report from Us Weekly indicates that there’s no official timeline for Kate’s recuperation, and all questions relating to her health crisis will be ignored until the Princess of Wales has made a full recovery.

Catherine, Princess of Wales at an evening reception for members of the Diplomatic Corps at Buckingham Palace on December 5, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Jonathan Brady – Pool / Getty Images)

“When she goes back to work after Easter, she will likely be ready to talk about it,” a source tells the outlet, noting that Kate may open up “when she’s doing a royal walkabout and meeting and greeting members of the public.”

The report indicates that Kate’s return to public life has been “delayed,” but it seems that no new date has been set.

This is somewhat distressing news, as it may indicate that Kate’s recovery is taking longer than expected.

Catherine, Princess Of Wales attends the opening of Evelina London's new children's day surgery unit on December 05, 2023 in London, England.
Catherine, Princess Of Wales attends the opening of Evelina London’s new children’s day surgery unit on December 05, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Reports of the postponed return were echoed today by Radar Online, where it was reported that Kate’s condition has made it difficult for her to eat.

Kate Middleton’s Health: The Latest on Her Abdominal Issues

“Kate is struggling to eat,” an insider described as “a well-placed royal source” told Radar.

“She continues to recover after the surgery, but the recuperation has been more difficult than expected,” the source continued, adding:

Catherine, Princess of Wales arrives to attend the "Together At Christmas" Carol Service" at Westminster Abbey in London on December 8, 2023.
Catherine, Princess of Wales arrives to attend the “Together At Christmas” Carol Service” at Westminster Abbey in London on December 8, 2023. (Photo by HENRY NICHOLLS/AFP via Getty Images)

“Kate was already painfully thin, so this is a cause for major concern behind palace walls,”

There are those who still believe that Kate’s withdrawal from public life had nothing to do with her health issues and was instead the result of Prince William’s alleged affair with Rose Hanbury.

However, that seems highly unlikely.

Catherine, Princess of Wales attends The "Together At Christmas" Carol Service at Westminster Abbey on December 08, 2023 in London, England.
Catherine, Princess of Wales attends The “Together At Christmas” Carol Service at Westminster Abbey on December 08, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

There’s no evidence that such an affair ever took place, and even if it had, Kate’s commitment to her royal duties is such that she’d likely honor her late mother-in-law by continuing to maintain appearances as she plotted her next move.

The news that Kate’s return has been postponed is unfortunate, but reports that she was seen out and about over the weekend seem to bode well for her recovery.

We wish her all the best as she continues to recuperate.

We’ll have further updates on this developing story as new information becomes available.