'Chicago Med': Yaya DaCosta Teases April's Rocky Path Ahead in Season 5 (Exclusive)

Chicago Med: Yaya DaCosta

The actress talks to ET about her character's struggles in season five.

Is April's path about to get even rockier?

Chicago Med's resident ED nurse has been on a roller-coaster journey all season, with it all reaching a peak in last week's season five winter premiere when April revealed to Ethan (Brian Tee) that she was unable to have children due to a devastating health condition -- but chose not to disclose her kiss with trauma surgeon Crockett (Dominic Rains). That secret didn't keep Ethan from proposing to April, resulting in an emotional engagement that may be fraught with tension.  

For actress Yaya DaCosta, April's arc this season has been "a blessing to be able to play." "To see her grow, both as a character, and just to have more screen time, the writers dove in deeper to her interpersonal relationships, into her inner world," DaCosta told ET at the NBCUniversal party at the winter Television Critics Association press tour recently. "It's a real gift. It's an honor to play her."

The 37-year-old model-turned-actress admitted she was surprised by April's trajectory in the last two years, especially with the way April and Ethan's on-again, off-again romance -- which now involves Crockett on the periphery -- has played out.  

"For all of season four, April and Ethan were bickering. It was clear that they loved each other but they were having a hard time figuring out how to be friends, whether they should get back together and then, they don't know how to do it. There was all of this intense energy between them, and it went on and on for the entire season. Finally, they get back together. And then we come into season five, there's a little bit of peace before something else happens. If it's not Emily, now it's Crockett. There's always something happening. That's where my surprise came in," DaCosta reflected, "because I thought that they would be able to be lovebirds for a while. But the Crockett conflict is very, very interesting and I can't wait to see how it plays out."

DaCosta pondered how long April will keep her kiss with Crockett a secret, explaining that there are only two ways to go about it. "I think that if she decides to tell him at some point herself, they could probably work through it. If she doesn't, and it comes out another way, it'll be a lot harder for sure," she hinted.

"I was definitely surprised by the kiss. I was surprised that for all of her efforts to get back with Ethan that she would allow herself to slip like that," DaCosta explained. "But I do have compassion for her. I do understand that in her moment of weakness finding out this terrible news [of her infertility], she made a bad decision. It could happen to anyone. I just wish that she could find some strength and take ownership of her actions."

DaCosta revealed that April is torn by her actions, sharing that her character deeply "regrets" the kiss with Crockett, "but she's also curious about where it came from." "She initiated it, so she's confused about her feelings," she said, commenting on April's potentially ill-advised engagement. "We'll see. She'll work it out, hopefully... She's just confused! I think she needs to go on a vision quest or a meditation retreat and figure out how to move forward from this."

The Chicago Med star also waxed poetic on what an engagement looks like for April and Ethan, considering the baggage that surrounds it. 

"It's interesting because even before the engagement, they were talking about starting a family, so I think it's a natural progression. But a lot of people choose not to get married," DaCosta said. "It just so happens that she still adheres to some of her Catholic values that she grew up with, so it makes sense that would be the next step for them."

"Looking at her situation, it's important to remember that because even if a woman doesn't want kids, it's still something that we've been indoctrinated with and we as a species have a lot of our confidence in our womanhood tied up in our fertility. So, to find out that something is 'wrong' with you or incomplete or incapable or inadequate is a real blow," she continued. "Everyone deals with that kind of news in a different way. This is just how she's dealing with it."

But DaCosta is hopeful that April will figure everything out: "Hopefully, at some point, before the end of the season, she'll get a break."

Chicago Med airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.

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