“NCIS” star Cote de Pablo’s decision to leave the hit CBS drama this fall shocked and saddened many fans.
Now, the actress is opening up to Latina magazine about her departure.
“It was not an easy decision, not one taken lightly. I feel like I am leaving my family,” she says in the September issue, on newsstands August 13.
“What I want to say most of all is thank you to the fans and to the people who have been so supportive of me and of the show, who have made the show the great success that it is."
[Related: Everything We Know About Ziva's 'NCIS' Exit]
De Pablo’s exit was after eight seasons on the popular procedural was entirely her choice, though CBS boss Les Moonves said she was offered “a lot of money” to stay.
Fans will miss her feisty Ziva, as well as the character’s relationship with Tony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly). “NCIS” showrunner Gary Glasberg has promised that De Pablo’s departure will include “a really significant Tony/Ziva payoff — everything I hope the Tiva fans have been waiting for."
Watch a key "NCIS" scene between Tony and Ziva from last season right here:
As for De Pablo, the actress will have more time to spend with boyfriend Diego Serrano and family in Chile. But don’t look for any vacation tweets or Instagrams — De Pablo doesn’t do social media.
“I’m not on Facebook. I’m not on Twitter. I know a lot of celebrities who go around complaining how little privacy they have. And then my question to that is always, well, how much of yourself are you putting out there?” she said.
“If you are everywhere, then you’ve sacrificed the very thing that you are complaining about, which is your own privacy.”