Raise your hand if you’ve ever cried during a Grey’s Anatomy episode. Or how about during a Meredith Grey scene? If there’s one thing we learned from Meredith, it’s that trauma, heartache, and loss do not define us. Instead, how we heal from pain, the loved ones we surround ourselves with, and how we persevere are the defining pillars of our lives. More than just a medical drama, Grey’s Anatomy is undoubtedly a once-in-a-generation defining series, surpassing over 16 seasons and redefining the topics TV shows touch on. Inclusive with its cast and subject matter, creator Shonda Rhimes has created a cultural phenomenon, one where empowering female and LGBTQ+ characters are nuanced, complex, and get the storylines they deserve.
As the lead, Meredith Grey has been through some heavy shit, growing up from a green resident to head of general surgery at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, all before our eyes. Played brilliantly by the incomparable Ellen Pompeo, Meredith has hardened over the seasons, dropping truth and wise quotes wherever she goes, some of which we rounded up below. Ahead, our favorite and most insightful Meredith Grey quotes about love, loss, and everything in between.
Best Meredith Grey Quotes
1. “Don’t let fear keep you quiet. You have a voice, so use it. Speak up. Raise your hands. Shout your answers. Make yourself heard. Whatever it takes, just find your voice and when you do, fill the damn silence.”
2. “Why do we often run for the hills when we feel the slightest connection? Why do we feel compelled to fight what we’re hardwired to do? Maybe it’s because when we find someone or something to hold on to, that feeling becomes like air. And we’re terrified we’re going to lose it. And trust me, you can get pretty good at the alone thing. But most things are better when they’re shared with someone else.” 3. “We’re adults. How did that happen, and how can we make it stop?” 4. “Sometimes it takes a huge loss to remind you of what you care about the most. Sometimes you find yourself becoming stronger as a result, wiser, better to deal with the next big disaster that comes along. Sometimes but not always.” 5. “You don’t have to be tough every minute of every day. It’s okay to let down your guard. In fact, there are moments when it’s the best thing you can possibly do — as long as you choose your moments wisely.” 6. “They say death is hardest on the living.” 7. “Too often, the thing you want most is the one thing you can’t have.” 8. “Letting go is the easy part. It’s the moving on that’s painful. So sometimes we fight it, trying to keep things the same. Things can’t stay the same though. At some point, you just have to let it go. Move on. Because no matter how painful it is, it’s the only way we grow.” 9. “Why do bad things happen to good people?” 10. “Decide. Is this the life you want to live? Is this the person you want to love? Is this the best you can be? Can you be stronger? Kinder? More compassionate? Decide. Breathe in. Breathe out. And decide.” 11. “The ties that bind us are sometimes impossible to explain.” 12. “Responsibility, it really does suck.” 13. “When the ground gives way and your world collapses, maybe you just need to have faith. And trust that you can survive this. Maybe you just need to hold on tight. And no matter what, don’t let go.” 14. “Why does it feel so good to get rid of things? To unload? To let go?” 15. “Some wounds we carry with us everywhere, and though the cut’s long gone, the pain still lingers.” 16. “Boundaries don’t keep other people out. They fence you in. Life is messy. That’s how we’re made. So, you can waste your life drawing lines. Or you can live your life crossing them.” 17. “If there’s just one piece of advice I can give you, it’s this. When there’s something you really want, fight for it — don’t give up no matter how hopeless it seems. And when you’ve lost hope, ask yourself if in 10 years from now you’re gonna wish you gave it just one more shot. Because the best things in life, they don’t come free.” 18. “There are days that make the sacrifices seem worthwhile and then there are the days where everything feels like a sacrifice. And then there are the sacrifices that you can’t even figure out why you’re making.” 19. “We’re friends, real friends, and that means no matter how long it takes, when you finally decide to look back, I’ll still be here.” 20. “You think that true love is the only thing that could crush your heart, the thing that could take your life and light it up or destroy it.” 21. “We all think we’re going to be great. And we feel a little bit robbed when our expectations aren’t met.” 22. “Who gets to determine when the old ends and the new begins?” 23. “Funny, isn’t it, the way memory works? The things you can’t quite remember, and the things you can never forget.” 24. “Desire leaves us heartbroken. It wears us out. Desire can wreck your life. But as tough as wanting something can be, the people who suffer the most are those who don’t know what they want.” 25. “Life is not a spectator sport.” 26. “Knowing is better than wondering, waking is better than sleeping, and even the biggest failure, even the worst, beats the hell out of never trying.” 27. “So pick me. Choose me. Love me.” 28. “The future is the home of our deepest fears and our wildest hopes. But one thing is certain — when it finally reveals itself, the future is never the way we imagined it.” 29. “We take our miracles where we find them. We reach across the gap and sometimes, against all odds, against all logic, we touch.” 30. “Sometimes it’s good to be scared. It means you still have something to lose.” 31. “Sometimes change is everything.” 32. “We can’t help ourselves. We see a line, we want to cross it. Maybe it’s the thrill of trading the familiar for the unfamiliar, a sort of personal dare. Only problem is, once you have crossed, it’s almost impossible to go back.” 33. “We have to keep reinventing ourselves, almost every minute because the world can change in an instant.” 34. “I think you can’t wait for someone to fly underneath you and save your life. I think you have to save yourself.” 35. “Just when we think we’ve figured things out, the universe throws us a curveball. So we have to improvise. We find happiness in unexpected places. We find our way back to the things that matter the most. The universe is funny that way, sometimes it just has a way of making sure we wind up exactly where we belong.” 36. “We have to constantly come up with new ways to fix ourselves.” 37. “Pain comes in all forms. The small twinge, a bit of soreness, the random pain. The normal pains we live with every day. Then there’s the kind of pain you can’t ignore. A level of pain so great that it blocks out everything else, makes the rest of your world fade away, until all we can think about is how much we hurt. How we manage our pain is up to us. Pain. We anesthetize, ride it out, embrace it, ignore it, and for some of us the best way to manage pain is to just push through it.” 38. “Just because we can live without something, it doesn’t mean we have to.” 39. “I think it is important to take the time to tell the people you love how much you love them while they can still hear you.” 40. “We have to be willing to give up what we used to believe. The more we’re willing to accept what is and not what we thought, we’ll find ourselves exactly where we belong.” 41. “The thing about love is, when it’s good, it’s so very good, and when it’s bad, it hurts so much.” 42. “The reality is that pain is there to tell us something, and there’s only so much pleasure we can take without getting a stomachache. And maybe that’s okay. Maybe some fantasies are only supposed to live in our dreams.” 43. “Pain: You just have to ride it out, hope it goes away on its own, hope the wound that caused it heals. There are no solutions, no easy answers. You just breathe deep and wait for it to subside.” 44. “There’s an end to every storm. Once all the trees have been uprooted. Once all the houses have been ripped apart. The wind will hush, the clouds will part, the rain will stop, the sky will clear in an instant. But only then, in those quiet moments after the storm, do we learn who was strong enough to survive it.” 45. “You got to wonder why we cling to our expectations, because the expected is just what keeps us steady. The expected’s just the beginning, the unexpected is what changes our lives.” 46. “Failure is inevitable, unavoidable. But failure should never get the last word. You have to hold on to what you want. You have to not take no for an answer, and take what’s coming to you. Never give in. Never give up. Stand up. Stand up and take it.” 47. “Don’t you wish you could just take it back? That thing you said? That thing you did? There’s no undo button. There’s only hoping we can learn. We can change, right? We can do better. We can’t take back what we’ve done. We can’t undo the past, cause the future keeps coming at us.” 48. “The body is a slave to its impulses.” 49. “You’re my sister. You’re my family. You’re all I’ve got.” 50. “More tequila. More love. More anything. More is better.” 51. “When do you throw in the tower? Admit that a lost cause is just that? There comes a point when it all becomes too much. When we get too tired to fight anymore. So we give up. That’s when the real work begins: to find hope, where there seems to be absolutely none at all.” 52. “We all remember the bedtime stories of our childhoods. The shoe fits Cinderella, the frog turns into a prince, sleeping beauty is awakened with a kiss. Once upon a time and then they lived happily ever after. Fairy tales, the stuff of dreams. The problem is, fairy tales don’t come true. It’s the other stories, the ones that begin with dark and stormy nights and end in the unspeakable. It’s the nightmares that always seem to become reality. The person that invented the phrase ‘Happily ever after’ should have his ass kicked, so hard!” 53. “I’m all glued back together now. I make no apologies for how I chose to repair what you broke. You don’t get to call me a whore.” 54. “There comes a moment when it’s more than just a game, and you either take that step forward or turn around and walk away. I could quit. But here’s the thing: I love the playing field.”
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