Ellen Pompeo is bidding farewell to Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. The longtime Grey’s Anatomy star is preparing to step away from the show she’s led for 19 seasons, and penned a heartfelt note to fans to mark the occasion.

In a letter addressed the Grey‘s viewers posted to Instagram yesterday, Pompeo thanked them for their dedication and assured them she won’t be gone forever.

I am eternally grateful and humbled by the love and support you have all shown me, Meredith GREY and the show for 19 seasons! Through it all….none of it …would have been possible without the best fans in the world. You all are RIDERS and you all have made the ride so fun and ICONIC!!,” Pompeo wrote.

She continued, “I love you madly and appreciate you right back. This isn’t your first time on the rollercoaster… you know the show must go on and I’ll definitely be back to visit. With a lot of love and immense gratitude XoE ”

Pompeo, who has starred on Grey’s since since the very first season, is scaling back her role on the show to pursue other projects, as first reported in August. As she plans to star in Orphan, an upcoming Hulu project, her Grey’s character Meredith will move from Seattle to Boston, freeing up more time IRL for Pompeo.

Her final episode on the show is set for Feb. 23, 2023.

Ahead of Pompeo’s exit from the medical drama, her former co-star Patrick Dempsey joked that she’ll never forget her time there thanks to the collection of props she’s gathered over the years. Dempsey, who left Grey’s in 2015, appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live Thursday (Nov. 17), where he reflected on his tenure as Dr. McDreamy and revealed some perks of starring on Grey‘s (including enough Band-Aids to last a lifetime).

“She’s leaving the show. I don’t know if you heard, she got caught stealing Band-Aids from the set,” Jimmy Kimmel joked about Pompeo, to which Dempsey replied, “Did she really? Finally, they caught her.”

He then quipped, “Can you imagine what she’d have in her house now from 19 seasons? A full hospital.”

Sounds pretty useful to us!

Catch Pompeo’s final episode of Grey’s Anatomy when the show returns Thursday, February 23, 2023 on ABC.