“Grey’s Anatomy” fans are still reeling from the dramatic loss of Lexie Grey (Chyler Leigh) and Teddy (Kim Raver) on Thursday’s Season 8 finale, and creator/head writer Shonda Rhimes wants viewers to know penning their exits was heart wrenching.
“Callie said it best tonight: Life changes in an instant. Turns on a dime,” Shonda wrote in an extended Tweet on Thursday. “This finale was incredibly hard to write. I did not enjoy it. It made me sick and it made me sad. We end the season not knowing ANYTHING about the future. Except for two things. We know we are definitely saying goodbye to two of my favorite people: Chyler Leigh (Lexie) and Kim Raver (Teddy).”
Lexie died on Thursday’s show after being crushed by wreckage following a plane crash (but not before delivering a tearjerker of a goodbye to Eric Dane’s McSteamy), while Teddy was fired from Seattle Grace by Owen (Kevin McKidd).
“I know this season’s finale had some surprises for viewers and the exit of Kim Raver was one of the big ones. But Kim’s series option was up and she was ready to give Teddy Altman a much-needed vacation,” Shonda explained in the post. “It’s been a pleasure working with someone as talented and funny and kind as Kim; everyone is going to miss her terribly. I like to imagine that Teddy is still out there in the Grey’s Anatomy universe, running Army Medical Command and building a new life.”
The writer said she and Chyler Leigh both knew it was time for Lexie to move on.
“I love Chyler and I love the character of Lexie Grey. She was an important member of my Grey’s family,” she wrote. “This was not an easy decision. But it was a decision that Chyler and I came to together. We had a lot of thoughtful discussion about it and ultimately we both decided this was the right time for her character’s journey to end. As far as I’m concerned Chyler will always remain a part of the Shondaland family and I can’t wait to work with her again in the future.”