November 11 marks 10 years since Y&R’s Melissa Claire Egan assumed the role of Chelsea Lawson. In an exclusive chat with Digest, the actress shares her feelings about the milestone. “It’s just so crazy to me that it’s already been 10 years,” she marvels. “I think about all the things that Chelsea has been through in that time, and the stories she’s been in. The highs and the lows, the ups and the downs, and the romances for the character, and then all of the wonderful experiences for myself, working with these amazing people; the writers, the directors, the crew and the cast members. There’s also what I’ve gone through personally in terms of getting married and starting a new family. So much has happened to Chelsea and Missy in that time.” Egan is also amazed that she’s always been front and center in storylines during her entire tenure. “I’m so grateful for that, too,” she marvels. “Believe me, I don’t take that for granted. There have been so many fun experiences that Chelsea has gone through. I’ve been at a party and someone asks what do I do? After I tell them I’m an actress on a soap opera, their next question is what has my character been up to? It’s so fun to tell them, ‘Oh, I’ve been in a mental institution, and years ago, I lied about the paternity of my baby, and I got mad at my best friend for killing my husband.’ So outlandish but so fun. It’s been a wild and very satisfying ride.” In other news, Egan is already back to work and Chelsea will first be seen on December 14. Be sure to pick up an upcoming issue of Digest, in which Egan talks to us about motherhood (she gave birth to son Caden on August 21), which co-star brought her lasagna her first week home from the hospital and what it really felt like to turn 40.