This is so scary. Kate Walsh may have done the perfect portrayal of Dr. Addison Montgomery on Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice for all those years, but at one point she was a patient herself. The actress previously revealed she was once diagnosed with a brain tumor, and now she's sharing how it had an effect on her body at the time.
It happened back in June 2015, but Kate, 50, just opened up in a new interview with the DENtalks podcast about the traumatic experience. "I was so scared because I didn’t know what was happening to my body," she shared. "I started meditating again to calm myself with my old mantra, silent mantra."
"And as soon as I was done [with MRI], the MRI tech was like, the radiologist wants to see you. And she says... [it] appears to be a very large, we don’t know until [the doctors] get in there... hopefully benign brain meningioma, brain tumor... in that moment I left my body," Kate continued. "I thought maybe it was like early onset Alzheimer’s or some sort of macular degeneration."
In September 2017, she spoke out about it to Cosmopolitan for the first time. "I got an MRI and thank God I did, because it turned out I had a very sizable brain tumor in my left frontal lobe. And three days later I was in surgery having it removed," she said of the lemon-sized tumor, which was eventually determined to be benign.
Kate added, "She starts to say, 'Well, it looks like you have a very sizable brain tumor' — and I just left my body. My assistant had driven me there, and I had to go get her so that she could take notes because I was gone. It was never anything I would have imagined." And even though she had all that experience as a TV doctor, she was still absolutely terrified by the whole incident (as she should have been).
"It was the total opposite! You’d think that after playing Dr. Addison for the better part of a decade, where I spent more time on a hospital set than at my house, that I would feel somehow more comfortable, but I was such a little scaredy-cat," she admitted. "In the hospital, I felt like I might as well be six years old. My mother gave me rosary beads, my friend gave me a stuffed animal to go into surgery with... I played a real badass on TV, but when it comes to being a patient it's such a vulnerable experience."
When talking to the podcast in early June 2018, she opened up about how "everything shifted" following her recovery. "You know, there’s definitely, I think a moment — and probably a lot of people who have had either a big illness, or some kind of medical scare can relate to this — after you survive," Kate confessed. "You’re like, 'Oh yeah, what’s important?' You face your own mortality in a very real way." We're glad Kate is feeling better today — and we're crossing our fingers that she'll make a surprise cameo on Grey's this upcoming season!