For four seasons, Sheree Whitfield let fans into her world as one of the original women of the The Real Housewives of Atlanta. After exiting the series in 2012, she turned her focus to other projects, including helping her mom with an important cause: reuinting with the daughter she put up for adoption years ago. Sheree met her now 51-year-old sister, Mary, in March, after Sheree's mother registered with the state in order to try one day find her. "It was so surreal. Honestly, I never thought we'd meet," Sheree told The Daily Dish. "I knew about her. I know my mom has searched for her for years... I'm thankful; we're thankful and we're blessed we did get a chance to finally meet her and welcome her into our family."
The story of how it all took place is pretty incredible. Shortly after her mother gave birth, Sheree's grandmother put the baby up for adoption in Ohio, but the records were sealed until this year. In an interesting twist, her long-lost sister actualy grew up not far away from Sheree — and Mary was actually friends with her first cousin without knowing they were related. "I've always wanted a big sister, so I have one now. We're still getting to know each other. It's so crazy all the similarities that she and my mom [have]," she added.
But, of course, fans can't stop talking about her RHOA return — including her heated argument with Kenya Moore in the season premiere. Though, it's the friendship not the drama Sheree missed most. "I really missed the camaraderie with the girls," she said. "We had some crazy times, some very dramatic moments, but we also had some really, really good times and great laughs. I didn't know several of the girls. So just being in that circle again, the camaraderie... actually, the support from the girls has been very surprising — from most of the girls, let me say that."
Sheree may not be planning girls' nights out with Kenya anytime soon, but she does get along with Porsha Williams, whom she calls a "really sweet, cool girl [and] fun girl," as well as Season 8 rookie, Kim Fields. "We're women. We're all very opinionated, strong women — but at the same time, I think, you'll be surprised [to see], I think, a lot of us have definitely grown. We're not particularly holding grudges. We're able to agree to disagree on some things and move forward."
Sheree does admit she would have liked the chance to speak with NeNe Leakes, who announced her exit from RHOA over the summer. "I was a little disappointed because I've always said I would definitely like to be back on the show when NeNe is there just so we can see how we've grown [and if] we're we able to move forward, or are we still gonna be in the same place, as what, four seasons ago? That whole dynamic would be interesting," she said. She also revealed her biggest hope for a NeNe conversation, should it ever happen, considering they've had some bad blood in the past. "I hope it would be grown up. I hope we would be able to sit and have a civilized conversation... and maybe have some laughs."
At the same time, Sheree hasn't been sitting by the phone waiting on a call from NeNe. Since leaving RHOA she's kept herself more than busy — both in her personal and professional lives. "When I was on the show I would have to have someone else taking [my kids] or I wasn't always able to attend a lot of their events," she said. "I just felt like they were growing up before my eyes and I was missing a lot of that."
She's also working behind the camera, as a producer on WE tv's Selling It in the ATL. "I've been in front of the camera, and being behind it is awesome," she said. "I've been around for a while. I've done the reality thing and I kind of stepped back and I took note and I watched and I feel like I know what makes good TV and I feel like we were able to create that."
Check out Sheree's fiery showdown with Kenya below.