[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/11/16/art.sarahpalin.0930.gi.jpg caption="Palin talks about controversies and future with Oprah."](CNN) - When Sarah Palin got a surprise phone call from the McCain campaign one August afternoon asking if she'd like to be on the Republican presidential ticket, the then-Alaska governor didn't doubt for a moment she was ready for the challenge.
"When I got the call, it was not such a shocking call to me," Palin told talk-show host Oprah Winfrey in a highly anticipated interview that aired Monday. "I felt quite confident in my abilities and my executive experience and I knew that this is an executive administrative job. I was happy to get in there and contribute."
Nor was Palin deterred by the fact she had five kids at home, including an infant with special needs.
"It never occurred to me that I couldn't do the job because of children," she said. "My children are my strength. ... They allow me to be grounded."
But what did shock Palin was just how much the campaign knew about her and her family before she even formally met with Sen. John McCain to discuss the job. Contrary to what was reported in the media, Palin said, she was extensively vetted and the campaign knew exactly "who they were getting."