By Kwin Paul
What is it like starting over after a fourteen year relationship? Well Aryn Drake Lee, estranged wife of Jessie Williams and mother of two of his children opens up to PEOPLE for the first time since her separation from the Grey’s Anatomy Star.
Drake-Lee considers the entire situation a ‘blessing in disguise’ as she found her strength after seeing the mutual friends that the couple made during the 8 years of their lives in Los Angeles, side with him. After feeling shut out by their friends, Aryn worked constantly trying to get herself to the positive place that she is now.
“Hollywood and I bumped heads. It was never my value system, it was never something I was striving for,” she says. “It never felt comfortable for me because of how superficial it was. And then that all became abundantly clear when everybody went left “
Aryn explained that her new venture, a podcast about mums and babies, was inspired by her situation. The podcast which she hosts alongside Trian Long-Smith is entitled, BBSARETRASH (Babies Are Trash), is aimed at providing what she wishes she had during her weakest moments…support.
” I think a lot of women are still in the place where we’re pretending like we can do everything. And it’s not realistic, and it’s not holistic and it’s not sustainable,” says Drake-Lee. “I want to empower women to find their voice, to take the mask off so that they can really find the connection and the community that they are seeking.”
Aryn never ascribed to the public life as it never aligned with her values and the way she wants to raise her children. Love caused her to uproot her life in New York, where she worked as a real estate agent to follow her husband and support his dreams. Can you imagine uprooting your life and being rewarded with divorce papers?
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They have been rumors of Jessie’s infidelity with a co-star which he as denied. But like a true queen, Aryn does not believe in tit-for-tat because its neverending and people believe what they want, it’s easy.
Her focus remains on her kids Sadie, 5 and Maceo, 3. Hopefully the community which she is now a part of can support other women. Her hope is that women can take back their voices and show their faces.
“I resisted this for the last 10 years, having a public profile, and then I got dragged into it against my will. It was possibly my worst nightmare. And then it played out, and now I’m better off for it.”
That’s how you take a negative and make it into a positive.