When Zola and Bailey grow up and ask how their parents met, here’s hoping Meredith makes up something that doesn’t involve a one-night stand. Still, even though the couple’s first meeting came with a dose of embarrassment, the sparks between them flew immediately.
While Derek found himself torn between Meredith and Addison, Dr. Grey tried to make his decision easier by telling him she loved him “in a really, really big, pretend-to-like-your-taste-in-music, let-you-eat-the-last-piece-of-cheesecake, hold-a-radio-over-my-head-outside-your-window, unfortunate way that makes me hate you.” Sadly, Derek did not pick her, choose her, love her… but we can take comfort in knowing he eventually got his head on straight.
Meredith and Derek “Reunite” In an Exam Room (Season 2, Episode 27)
If Meredith was having trouble breathing before Derek had his way with her on an examination table, we’re not sure how she ever managed to catch her breath afterwards.
Derek Saves Meredith From Drowning (Season 3, Episode 16)
Near-death experiences have been all too common for this couple, including Meredith’s brush with the afterlife after drowning. Fortunately, Meredith survived her underwater ordeal, but we’re not sure she would have if Derek hadn’t been by her side.
Meredith Makes a Candle House (Season 4, Episode 17)
Derek may have actually built his dream house for Meredith, but she was the one to construct it first — in candles, that is. After this pair had gone through a romantic rough patch, Meredith’s grand gesture was the exact kind of reassurance that Derek (and all of us) needed.
Derek Proposes In an Elevator (Season 5, Episode 19)
Who knew brain scans could be so romantic? Actually, who knew a proposal without the words, “Will you marry me?” could be so romantic? If there’s anyone that could pull off an engagement sans bended knee, it’s Derek Shepherd — and pull it off he did.
Derek and Meredith’s Post-It Note Wedding (Season 5, Episode 24)
We’re positive that Meredith and Derek’s wedding vows would have been just as tear-inducing if they’d been spoken in front of a congregation (or at City Hall, for that matter). But the promises they made to each other on a blue Post-It note were even more profound — and financially savvy, to boot.
Derek Is Shot (Season 6, Episode 23)
Sure, Meredith might have a dark, twisty (and sometimes selfish) personality, but that side of her was nowhere to be found when a vengeful shooter came into Seattle Grace. Rather than let Derek die on the operating table after getting gunned down, Meredith offered her own life to the shooter. It was one of Meredith and Derek’s most moving relationship moments — even if Derek wasn’t conscious to see it happen.
Derek and Meredith Adopt Zola (Season 7, Episode 20)
Derek told Meredith all the way back in Season 4 that he wanted to marry her and have kids with her. In this touching episode, he got to check the second item off that list, adopting the adorable Zola and melting hearts everywhere in the process.
Meredith Tells Derek She Is Pregnant (Season 9, Episode 7)
Not long after adopting their first child, Meredith and Derek were able to conceive their own baby — take that, Meredith’s hostile uterus! Little did the couple know that Meredith would deliver baby Bailey in the dark, during a major Seattle storm. (Thanks for that anxiety, Shonda Rhimes!)
Meredith and Derek Fight Over D.C. (Season 10, Episode 24)
MerDer’s relationship hit yet another snag when Derek landed a job opportunity in Washington, D.C. — somewhere Meredith did not want to move. After a series of happy milestones for the couple, this one proved much more contentious, and it would go on to define their marriage for much longer than we’d hoped.
Derek Wants Another Baby (Season 11, Episode 20)
In hindsight, this adorable flashback between Derek and Meredith was also one of their most bittersweet moments. Try not to sob as you remember Derek telling his wife, “It’s always been you,” before revealing that he wanted another baby. (OK, you can sob.)