Meg Ryan: I Had an 'Unhealthy Marriage'
As for why she took the time off, the star of When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle said she needed some space. "It was definitely time to take a break and just regroup and see where I was," Ryan told Oprah.
Ryan, 44, said her time away from Hollywood was not only to focus on herself, but also to help others. To that end she began working with an international organization called CARE, which is dedicated to wiping out poverty in the poorest corners of the world by building up bonds between women.
She also adopted her baby girl from China, which fulfilled a dream that began 10 years ago. But Ryan first wanted to wait until her son Jack, 13, with Quaid, was older.
Ryan first named the girl Charlotte, but quickly realized that name didn't fit her and changed it. "I thought she was Charlotte and she's just not," Ryan said. "She's a Daisy. She's got the most open, beautiful, honest face you'll just ever see."
The actress also dished on her much-publicized involvement with Russell Crowe and split with Quaid in 2001. Although Crowe had been blamed as the cause of Ryan and Quaid's breakup, the actress denied that was the case.
"It was never about another man," she said. "My and Dennis's relationship just couldn't sustain." She said the couple's relationship had been on the outs for at least five years and probably should have ended sooner.
Ryan seemed more comfortable focusing on her current emotional state of mind, saying that she presently feels like "more of a woman" than ever before.
"There are times in every woman's life where she does need to get out and expand and do all those things that make her the best version of herself," Ryan said.