Ellen Pompeo has decided to step away from her series regular role on the critically acclaimed medical drama Grey’s Anatomy after playing the part of Dr. Meredith Grey for nearly 17 years. On Thursday, Pompeo took some time out of her busy schedule to write an emotional post on Instagram in which she thanked the Grey’s Anatomy audience for supporting her and cheering her on while she was in the operating room. She went on to say that “none of it…would have been possible without the best fans in the world,” and she went on to call them “the best fans in the world.”

She likened working on Grey’s to riding a rollercoaster and expressed her profound gratitude to the viewers for being the most dedicated “riders.” And we all know that Grey’s fans are diehards who will support the show no matter what. Pun intended. They are the reason, according to Pompeo, why the show has such an “ICONIC” reputation. She gushed, “I love you furiously and appreciate you right back,” before finishing off with “…a lot of love and immense thanks XoE.” “I love you frantically and appreciate you right back,” she said.

Pompeo was greeted with a deluge of responses from people such as fellow Grey’s actress veteran and returnee Kate Walsh and real-life doctor Aviva Romm, MD, both of whom wished her the best of luck in her next endeavor. And let’s not forget Luke Baines’ comment that said, “Sedate me.” Too soon? We can appreciate the acclaim, and we have full faith in Meredith’s abilities. Because she rose through the ranks at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, from surgical intern to Chief of Surgery, she possesses all of the necessary qualifications.

In addition to taking her final bow, Pompeo hints that this isn’t the last time you’ll see her on the show by saying something along the lines of “this isn’t the last time you’ve seen of me.” We are aware that she will continue to do the voiceovers for the show’s opening and closing sequences; however, it is possible that she will also make an appearance or two. Is it possible that Grey’s Anatomy may spawn a spin-off? For our part, we can’t wait to find out what Pompeo has planned for the future.

By Anna

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