By Meredith Lepore
Apr 07, 2015 @ 8:15 am
Gary Miller/FilmMagic

The Vampire Diaries fans probably won't want to be seen in daylight this week. Nina Dobrev, who plays the central character of the series, Elena Gilbert, announced in an Instagram post yesterday that she would be leaving the series at the end of this season.

Underneath a picture of her and the show's creator, Julie Plec, she wrote a long message informing fans of her difficult decision. She revealed that she had just spent the weekend with her "TVD family" at what was actually a goodbye party for her long run with the CW show.

She wrote in the message:

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The relatively unknown Dobrev first came into our homes in 2009 when the series, based on the YA novels by L.J. Smith, debuted on The CW. According to an official statement Plec gave to People, the avid yogi wants to take this time "to spread her wings, get some rest, travel the world and also take it by storm."

Dobrev encouraged fans to stick with her through the May 14 finale. She wrote, "I invite you to hop on the roller coaster ride that is Elena Gilbert's life and join me as I celebrate her and prepare to say goodbye to her—and to my work family—as I move on to the next chapter of my life."

On the plus side, Ian Somerhalder, Paul Wesley, Candice Accola, and Kat Graham have all signed on for Season 7, which was picked up by by The CW in January. Read Dobrev's entire farewell message below:

Dearest TVD Family, I've just spent the most beautiful weekend on Lake Lanier in Georgia with my own TVD Family, the cast and crew of The Vampire Diaries. I want to be the first to tell you that it wasn't just a holiday celebration, it was a goodbye party. I always knew I wanted Elena's story to be a six season adventure, and within those six years I got the journey of a lifetime. I was a human, a vampire, a doppelganger, a crazy immortal, a doppelganger pretending to be human, a human pretending to be a doppelganger. I got kidnapped, killed, resurrected, tortured, cursed, body-snatched, was dead and undead, and there's still so much more to come before the season finale in May. Elena fell in love not once, but twice, with two epic soulmates, and I myself made some of the best friends I'll ever know and built an extended family I will love forever. There's more to come before we wrap this up, and I promise you'll get to hear all about my experiences over the next month as we approach the season finale (I have given an exclusive interview for the June issue of SELF Magazine that I am excited for you to see!), but until then I invite you to hop on the roller coaster ride that is Elena Gilbert's life and join me as I celebrate her and prepare to say goodbye to her -- and to my work family -- as I move on to the next chapter of my life. I want to share this goodbye with all of you (this weekend's pictures were just the beginning). You, the wonderful fandom who gave more love, support and passion than anyone could have ever imagined seven years ago, when a young Degrassi girl from Canada showed up in LA to audition for 'that Twilight TV show.' ;-) I love you all. Fasten your seatbelts. If you think you know what's coming, you don't. Love, Nina

A photo posted by Nina Dobrev (@ninadobrev) on


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