After more than 400 episodes, Grey’s Anatomy is facing a future without Meredith Grey. The ABC medical drama’s namesake character left Seattle in the February 23 episode — Season 19, Episode 7, “I’ll Follow the Sun” — in what Ellen Pompeo called her “final episode for a while.”
So, how did Mer exit the picture?
[Warning: The below contains major spoilers for Grey’s Anatomy Season 19, Episode 7, “I’ll Follow the Sun.”]
The episode picks up a few weeks after the last installment, and Mer is still recovering from a house fire while getting ready to move her family across Boston, where daughter Zola (Aniela Gumbs) found her dream school.
Nick (Scott Speedman), however, is angry that he moved from Minnesota for her, and now she’s making a cross-country move of her own and didn’t even talk to him about it. But Mer reminds him that when she told him she loved him, he “didn’t say it back.”
On top of that frustration, Mer also loses her final patient at Grey Sloan, the children’s book author Tessa Hobbes (Patricia Richardson). But Tessa had a thumb drive with her final manuscript on it, so at least her work will live on.
And in the scrub room after the surgery, Mer tells Nick she wants him in her life but she’s not going to beg.
Later, Mer is surprised to find all of her colleagues gathered in the surgical lobby, ready to toast her with champagne. “Once upon a time, you were the bane of my existence,” Bailey (Chandra Wilson) tells her. “You grew up to become one of my greatest points of pride.”
And Richard (James Pickens Jr.) adds, “This place won’t be the same without you.”
Meanwhile, the former Dr. Helm (Juicy Elliot) — in her latest role as bartender at Joe’s — gives Nick a talking-to about what he’s giving up. “She’s Meredith Grey,” Helm says. “She’s impossible, and she’s perfect, and she’s brilliant and she cares. … For some stupid reason, she’s into men, so she never fell in love with me, but she fell in love with you. And you’re here? How stupid are you?”
And with that reprimand, Nick rushes off to the airport to intercept Mer. He realizes he won’t make it in time, so he calls Mer, who has already boarded her flight, to say that he has loved her from the day they met and every day since.
Mer, however, pretends she can’t hear him and says she’ll call him once she and her kids are settled in Boston. (Sorry, buddy.)
And the episode ends with another generation of Grey Sloan interns moving into the empty Grey house: Mer, Maggie (Kelly McCreary), and Amelia (Caterina Scorsone) gave their house keys to Griffith (Alexis Floyd), Yasuda (Midori Francis), and Adams (Niko Terho), respectively.
Meanwhile, on their flight to Boston, Mer reads the manuscript of Teresa’s final book to her three kids. “As long as the sun rises on your life, there will be new dragons to slay,” she reads. “So the end of my story is not any kind of ever after because I’m still alive. I’m still here. And the sun still rises on my life.”
How did that goodbye sit with you, Grey’s fans? Let us know in the poll and the comments below!
Grey’s Anatomy, Thursdays, 8/7c, ABC