Rick Rowell/ABC
Aili Nahas
September 06, 2016 09:00 PM

Spoiler warning: For those who haven’t seen Tuesday’s finale of Bachelor in Paradise, plot details will be revealed below.

From the onset, they seemed an unlikely couple, but now, two months after their surprise engagement in Paradise, Carly Waddell and Evan Bass are happier than ever.

“Everything happened for a reason,” Waddell tells PEOPLE exclusively in this week’s issue. “It’s been a long journey for me in Bachelor Nation, but I would do it a thousand times again. Because the next part is going to be bliss.”

Carly Waddell and Evan Bass on Bachelor in Paradise
Rick Rowell/ABC

Since the proposal, Bass and Waddell, who both live in Nashville, have been spending time with his three sons (Nathan, 15, Liam, 11 and Ensley, 8) and getting to know each other away from reality cameras.

Evan Bass and Carly Waddell on Bachelor in Paradise
Rick Rowell/ABC

“We have great communication,” says Waddell. “It’s what we had as friends and it’s what keeps us in love.”

Adds Bass, “I’m not your normal dude that’s on these shows. I’m definitely more emotional. And she accepts me. I love that.”

As for wedding bells, “we’re excited about getting married,” says Bass. Adds his wife-to-be: “I just love Evan. I would marry him tomorrow!”

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