You know how at the end of every classic Christmas movie the characters gather around holding hands and sing a song to celebrate the lessons they’ve learned along the way? That’s how I feel about finally reaching The Bachelorette finale. Tayshia Adams picked her perfect man and I need Jimmy Stewart to start singing Auld Lang Syne.
From Clare Crawley blowing up the season by dragging Dale Moss off to Sacramento to be her sperm donor to Tayshia Adams saving it with her weird combination of independence and indecisiveness, this season has been a ride. But like all, mildly good things, it has to come to an end.
Thank god, I’m really tired.
When the fantasy suite episode ended on Monday night, veteran Ben had just messed up Tayshia’s vibe by coming back and telling her that he’s in love with her. Cool, cool, way to figure that out after she already dumped your ass once. When the finale opened on Tuesday, Tayshia decided to throw caution to the wind and invite him to the rose ceremony. You know, the one that Zac and Ivan expect to be a cakewalk, because Brendan self-eliminated.
My three main issues with Ben are 1) he only talked about how she makes him feel, not why he loves her 2) it took getting dumped for him to admit his feelings out loud, and 3) he only looks hot with his shirt off. It’s a problem.
Obviously, Zac and Ivan were shocked when Ben arrived for the rose ceremony, but the surprises didn’t end there. Before the first rose could be handed out, Tayshia asked if she could speak with Ivan. They walked over to a bench for privacy and then she told him that the discussion they had on their fantasy suite about religion was a deal-breaker. What conversation about religion?! They didn’t show us that. Is he in a cult? I demand a replay!
In a super anti-climactic good-bye, Ivan left the show and Tayshia moved forward to the finale with Zac and Ben as her last remaining boyfriends.
Ben meets the Family
First up to meet Tayshia’s Dad, Mom, and two brothers was Ben who introduced himself by saying, “She dumped me last week!” His family was impressed with Ben’s West Point education and his love for their daughter. Her dad, who is the most skeptical about the whole situation said, “I went from feeling doubtful to, I’ll give him a chance.” Talk about a ringing endorsement.
For his part, Ben was more animated than I’ve ever seen him. I guess it takes being left broken-hearted to make Ben come alive. Surely that bodes well for the future of their relationship. Tayshia says her feelings for Ben are coming back to her, but like, enough to get engaged tomorrow?
Zac Meets the Parents
The next day, Zac met her parents with a sweaty brow, arms full of flowers, and deeply earnest love for their daughter. I can’t say that I’m a huge Zac fan in general, but I am a fan of how articulately and vulnerably he speaks. If Tayshia is still looking for her “grown-ass man,” she found him.
They shared a New York style pizza and it seemed like he had officially won the whole family over.
Dad Doesn’t Always Know Best
Tayshia needs to put a do not disturb sign on her suite, because not once has a knock at her door been a harbinger of good news. This time it was her dad showing up to make her doubt herself. Honestly, I’m tired of this trope. Dads are great and a good dad is the best gift a daughter can have, but that doesn’t make them an expert in your life as an adult. Tayshia is 30 years old, take a seat.
Basically, Tayshia’s dad thinks Ben and Zac are nice guys, but he also thinks she’d be making a mistake as she did in her previous marriage if she got engaged to one of them. No one asked, Bro.
Zac and Tayshia’s Final Date
Tayshia showed up to her final date with Zac a hot mess. She was doubting everything she was feeling thanks to her dad stoking her insecurities. But Zac was like, “Nah, I got you,” and he really did. They had a romantic dance lesson and by the end, she was following his lead and leaning into his confidence- not just on the dance floor, but in them.
I think I just became a Zac stan.
That night Tayshia voiced some of her fears about disappointing Zac in the future which would cause him to leave her. Once again, Zac was like, “Nah, I got you.” It turns out that that same night was the nine-year anniversary of his sobriety. He told Tayshia that facing his sobriety has taught him not to run, he faces his fears head-on. He doesn’t care what she does in the future, he is choosing her.
Reader, I think I love him.
Ben and Tayshia
The next morning should have been Ben’s last date with Tayshia but
I’m Tayshia’s in love with Zac now, sorry, Ben. No really, sorry, Ben. She dumped him. Again.
Thanks to his practice round the first time Tayshia dumped him, Ben was a little more prepared this time around. He wished her well and left in the SUV of shame for the second time in a week. He looked at the camera and said, “She was perfect for me,” and all I kept thinking was, Zac would prioritize being perfect for her.
The Finale We Deserved
Okay, so this was the most perfect finale of all time.
With Ben gone, Tayshia rolled up to the finale rose ceremony in bridal white and with tears in her eyes. I got scared for a second that she was rethinking her choice, but then she told Chris that she’s just so excited because she really loves Zac. Me too! It’s new, but, me too! She told Chris that she doesn’t think she has ever been in love until now, and I just melted.
When Zac arrived I stopped taking notes. I have been covering this show since 2015 and I have never, ever done that until now. Apparently, it takes a real-life romance novel hero to catch my attention.
Zac loves her. Like REALLY loves her. In that big, overwhelming, makes you believe in the impossible, but it’s still grounded way. And she loves him too.
He got down on one knee and proposed. She said yes. I cried actual tears. I didn’t even cry at the birth of my three children but Zac’s proposal did it.
They laughed and kissed and I hope I never see them again because this ending was perfect and I don’t need another.
2020 sucks, but the finale of The Bachelorette didn’t.
I’ll be back next week with unsolicited advice for the cast of Matt James‘ season of The Bachelor. Then his season will premiere on January 4th. Do you guys want another fantasy league, because I do? Let’s talk in the comments about how perfectly perfect this finale was.
Heidi is currently obsessed with watching people make bad decisions on TV, being a coastal elite, artificially avoiding any sign of aging, reading feminist romance novels, and getting the biggest laugh at her own expense. She has a husband, 3 kids, a dog and anxiety.