updated 07/30/2013 AT 11:00 AM ET
•originally published 07/30/2013 AT 11:40 AM ET
Former Bachelor contestant Desiree Hartsock is calling the shots and handing out the roses as the current star of The Bachelorette. The bridal stylist will blog all season long on PEOPLE.com about her dates, the guys and the difficult decisions she must make. You can also follow Desiree on Twitter.
So let’s start with what I’m sure you are all wondering about … My relationship with Brooks was always secure and confident when we were together, but I never knew what was going through his mind when we were apart. That should have been a red flag, but sometimes love is blind.
I never wanted to believe that maybe this experience was more than just hard for Brooks, and that he potentially wasn’t on the same page as me regarding our relationship. From our dates, notes passed and words spoken, he led me to believe that he was on board and wanted this to work out. I had such strong feelings for him that I couldn’t imagine not reaching the full potential of a proposal.
I was surprised watching the episode and seeing the conversations Brooks had with his mother and sister and with Chris Harrison, expressing his doubts and feelings. He never expressed those concerns with me until it was too late. I was completely blindsided and heartbroken by his exit.
It’s hard enough to go through a difficult breakup once, so you can imagine how uncomfortable it is to relive it. When he first greeted me on that beach, I knew that something was wrong and I was shocked to learn exactly how he felt. It was so different from how he felt during his hometown date (or what he had expressed to me).
I am relieved now that he was honest about his feelings and that he was brave enough to address them before taking the relationship further. I wish Brooks could have felt more comfortable coming to me sooner but it was better that it happened in Antigua and not down the road.
The Other Guys
Brooks saying goodbye left me questioning everything, but before seeing him, I did have great dates with the other guys.
Drew is such a loving and caring man and he is truly ready to commit and start a family. The date we shared in Antigua was a great way to start off the week and I was so glad to experience the culture and scenery with him.
The rain couldn’t have ruined our date because it was more about what was being discussed, than the beautiful, romantic setting on the beach. That night, away from cameras, I was able to learn more about his childhood, high school years and future goals. All of that gave me even more insight to what a life would be like with Drew.
Chris almost seemed too good to be true. The great thing about our relationship is that we connected on all levels and that made hanging out a lot of fun. I felt right at home on the beach, splashing in the water and being in Chris’s arms. It was such a relief and a turning point in our relationship to discuss what a future would look like together.
He was so nervous to discuss relocating, but that is such an important discussion to have and I’m glad that he brought it up. I have always been open to that if I love someone because I don’t feel I have roots anywhere. This turned out to be a positive talk that brought us closer together.
My dates with Chris and Drew were so wonderful, but Brooks’s departure really threw me for a loop. I didn’t know what to do and I seriously considered going home and calling it all quits.
In a breakup, emotions are high and it takes self-reflection to gain clarity and peace. I was heartbroken by Brooks leaving and uncertain of what the future held. But knew that I had two incredible men still there who did love me and I wanted to see this through.
Could get past this heartbreak to love either one of them as much as they both deserved? And would we ever get the opportunity to explore that? I promised myself from the beginning that I was here for love and not just to go through the motions. I had to remind myself that if I wasn’t feeling enough for the guys, I wouldn’t stay.
Stay tuned next week to find out what happens with Brooks, my broken heart and the remaining men.
Thanks for watching and for reading my Bachelorette blog!