January 17, 2017 09:00 AM

 

He was devastated twice on The Bachelorette and had a summer fling on Bachelor in Paradise, and now Nick Viall is looking to find a love that lasts as The Bachelor‘s latest leading man. Read his exclusive blog for PEOPLE every week and follow him at Twitter, @viallnicholas28!

Hey guys, I know it has been a long week after the bomb I dropped on the women at the after party. I had been dreading that moment ever since Liz stepped out of the Limo, because it was only a matter of time before the truth would be told. I am all for transparency in relationships, so it wasn’t that I wanted to keep things secret. I just never wanted to reveal anything too personal or intimate. When sex is a part of the equation, I’ve learned my lesson not to expose anything that would put someone in the hot seat. But once I was confronted by Christine, I had to be honest with everyone else. While my past with Liz was very much behind me, I had to confront the women about it. I was fearful they would be upset with me keeping things from them, but I take ownership of my actions and told them the truth.

I’d figured that the women from the group date would have told the rest of the house by the time I arrived for the cocktail party. But I still wanted to address it immediately, put it all on the table, and make sure they knew that I was happy to answer any questions if the women had concerns. I was extremely anxious when that evening started, but the more I talked with the woman, they put me at ease … and I hope I did the same for them.

Talking with Astrid that evening, I think it was one of the most candid conversations I had that night. She was a little confused and trying to process everything. I appreciate women who lay all their concerns out, and can talk through things. In past relationships, I learned so much about that person through the tough conversations and how we handled them together. This was an evening that I felt would allow me and the woman to get to know more about one another.

Okay, so I’m sure you’re all dying to know what I thought when Corinne took out the whipped cream. If there is one thing Corinne never fails to succeed in, it is being full of surprises. Did I ever expect to find myself in front of the Bachelor mansion with a woman in a trench coat? Never. But Corinne is bold, sexy and unique … so I kind of just ran with it for a moment. I also want to point out she wasn’t naked, even though it might appear that way. That evening also happened to be my birthday, and I think she was trying to channel her inner Marilyn Monroe. It was important to make sure Corinne was comfortable, but I didn’t want to get too carried away with a cocktail party happening, not to mention just moving too fast in our relationship. I never wanted Corinne to find herself with a target on her back … but sleeping through a rose ceremony didn’t help her. These rose ceremony nights are exhausting to say the least. They have an emotional toll, and they’re also just long evenings. Despite the fact Corinne had a rose from the group date, she should have been there out of respect for the women who aren’t in that same position of comfort.

OKAY NOW, EVERYBODY. LET’S TALK ABOUT THE BACK – STREET – BOYS! I should be honest, when I met them the morning of the date I totally fan girl’ed a little, and by a little I mean a lot. The biggest regret of this day was not being at the mansion when the girls found out about the date. Especially now after seeing how crazy they went! I mean, what an amazing surprise. This band has been helping me with women since I was a teenager. I owe them first kisses, dates, and girlfriends since the ’90s. I also couldn’t tell you how many shameless routines I’d already danced to from my teen years alone in my room. I put the pressure on The Backstreet Boys this date, if there was any time to pull through for me — it was this moment! When the ladies met me in the studio, I was so psyched to show off the few moves I’d learned before they arrived. I mean, I had to impress them somehow … I was surrounded by the biggest boy band of our lifetime! The women quickly surpassed me in their moves and blew me away with how they mastered the choreography. But best of all, everyone was having a blast. I could tell at the time Corinne was a little uncomfortable, but I knew she had the confidence to pull through. Not to brag, but by the time we hit the stage, we could have easily been confused as legit backup dancers. Jasmine was a natural and owned that stage, Taylor really let loose and showed off some serious talent, but I have to agree with The Backstreet Boys that Danielle L. had brought the heat. It was cool to share that surreal moment with Danielle, and it’s something I don’t think she or I will ever forget.

Heading into the after party, I wanted to continue the high I felt with Danielle. Danielle was someone I’d had instant chemistry with from the night we met, and I felt like this was a date that brought us even closer. I felt natural around her, like we just fit. Giving Danielle the group date rose was easy. I wanted her to know that she not only blew me away on this date, but I could really start to see a future with her. As corny as it sounds, she gave me butterflies … and I’m man enough to admit it.

I need to back up a little, because before I had given that rose out, Nanny Raquel had apparently become MVP of the date. At the time, I hadn’t heard about the Nanny yet, but boy did these women get an introduction. Listen, I can’t judge anybody for what blessings they have in their lives. All I know, is that at the end of the day, if somebody was there to cut up cucumber for you, I’m sure you would take it.

My date with Vanessa was easily one of the coolest moments of my life. Zero G is such a surreal experience, and something that is a once in a lifetime opportunity. The sensation of flying at zero gravity was unbelievable; it really was like we were floating space. We were doing flips, eating floating water and crawling on the ceiling. Vanessa told me once we took off that she tends to get motion sickness, but for the longest time she was doing great! It wasn’t until the last 10 minutes the barf baggy had to come out. But she was such a trooper — getting a little sick didn’t ruin the moment one bit. If anything, I couldn’t help feel closer to her. I remember seeing her get sick and just wanting to do anything to make her feel better. I almost forgot where we were, I just wanted to hold her.

Going into our dinner, I was on such a high. I was excited to spend more time with Vanessa in the hopes that we could build on the magic that we experienced earlier in the day. Sitting down with Vanessa, we connected so easily. Talking about family, relationships and what we want in our futures. The chemistry between us intensified. I’d always found her beautiful, but our emotional connection took hold. I didn’t expect to get emotional around Vanessa and thinking back to that moment it was because I felt an incredible sense of excitement, and hope. Starting this journey, I was stressed this wouldn’t work out. Not because there weren’t amazing women, but I just know how rare it is to find a lifelong love. I feel like I had put a lot of pressure on myself to be the best, or be the man every one of the women wanted me to be. But in that moment with Vanessa, it was clear, that if a connection like this could happen this early, then this whole thing could lead to finding the one. I walked away from that night with a new sense of confidence not only in myself, but in this journey … and Vanessa was a woman I would be lucky to have as a partner.

As we move into the last date of the week, I just want to go on the official record that I did not come up with the name Nickcathalon. I will say, this was such an epic date! To have Carl Lewis, Allyson Felix and Michelle Carter help us with our track and field skills was unreal. These are some seriously talented and impressive athletes. I remember watching Carl Lewis as a kid, and aspiring to be as good as him. He was — and still is — such an idol of mine. Before the woman arrived, I thought I’d put my track shoes on and see if I could impress him. I ended up with a 5:21 mile … not my best work, but also not bad for someone who was basically in space the day before. Astronauts, feel free to have my back here.

I was eager to spend time with Dominique and Rachel since we didn’t have dates last week. Rachel and I had a strong connection from the night we met, so much so that I’d given her my first impression rose. Dominique was a woman I was intrigued by, but we just hadn’t had the chance to develop a strong connection yet. I was looking forward to spending time with Dominique and seeing her personality come through on this date.

From limo long jumps, to the cupid javelin, this track and field date was over the top. Who else can say that Olympic athletes paved the way to a hot tub prize? I’m not surprised Alexis, Rachel and Astrid made it to the final competition: the dash. They had excelled in not only their athletic chops, but had been so much fun throughout the day. When the horn blew, it took no time at all for Rachel to leave the Alexis and Astrid in her dust. But did this race take a turn or what. In the moment, that ring drop happened so fast! We all knew Rachel was technically the winner, but props to Astrid for getting her hands on that diamond. As much as I wanted to spend extra time with all the women, it was awesome to have this moment with Astrid. I also felt terrible because what you didn’t see, was the ring shattering when Astrid picked it up from the track. Her hand was cut up and bleeding all over the place, but she never lost her smile. After applying quite a few band aids, she got into the hot tub but had to keep her hand out of the chlorine so it wouldn’t sting. Talk about a badass.

Heading into the after party there was one woman I couldn’t get off my mind, Dominique. Unfortunately, she just couldn’t get out of her own head. I felt terrible that Dominique questioned herself and how amazing she is. I could see something the night we met, I saw a spark there – but once we sat down, I just didn’t see it any longer. This environment doesn’t work for everyone, and I felt in that moment that Dominique would never be able to be her best self in this journey. I didn’t need more time to think about it, and I didn’t want to take her into another rose ceremony if I already knew what I was going to do. Saying goodbye to Dominique was sad, but I knew it was the right choice for us both.

While saying goodbye to Dominique was a low moment in the evening, it had still been full of many highs. Astrid and I kept the spark going, and I’m not just talking about that bling ring. Alexis had me laughing all night when she revealed that she had taken the giant embarrassing print out of myself. By the time Rachel and I spoke, we seemed to just seamlessly pick up right where we left off from the first night. That was something I really loved about Rachel that day. We didn’t have a date the week prior, but she jumped into the day with confidence that absolutely captured me.  I felt like we had strong chemistry that day, and once we had alone time that evening, it was clear to me who I wanted to give the group date rose to.

I woke up the morning of the rose ceremony and knew I needed to shake things up a bit. I didn’t regret sending Dominique home the night before, but it certainly reminded me of how much pressure these women must be feeling, especially since it was still the first few weeks of starting this journey. I decided that a pool party was the best choice to get to know these women in a more natural setting without the pressure of a cocktail party. I was also interested in showing off my BBQ skills because if I might be so bold to admit it, I am a true master at the grill.

As the beautiful Alexis stated, “Seventeen girls, one pool party, one Nick … let’s see what happens” — and sure enough, there was a lot to see. It was awesome just how hyped up the women were for the pool party. We had the BBQ going, pool floats and something you guys didn’t see, an impromptu dance party. When Corinne pulled me into the bounce castle, I honestly didn’t expect it to become the controversy it did. By then, Corinne had proven herself to be a woman who was always thinking of a unique way to get my attention. It didn’t surprise me that she would want to pull me aside to do something different. After a few minutes of jumping around and kissing, I felt like it was time to go back to the party. The chemistry between us was strong, but there were so many other qualities that drew me to her. When the other women started to question her, and then question me — it was hard to answer. I stand by Corinne and her confidence. During my time on Andi’s season and Kaitlyn’s season, I too was questioned constantly. I appreciated Corinne for always putting us first. But when Vanessa started to question me, I stepped back and had to think about it. Were my actions contradicting what I was here for? Was I being unfairly called out? I had so much respect for all the women and I’ve always respected someone who challenges me. I honestly felt sick because I wanted to be fair, but follow my heart. Could I do both?

Next week you’ll see how things go down with Vanessa and I, as well as the rest of the women. I know the decisions I make can’t please everyone. The pool party didn’t exactly end on the note I wanted, so timing couldn’t have been better to hit the road and start traveling.  The first stop next week is huge for me and my relationships as we head to my hometown of Waukesha, Wisconsin. I don’t think any of the women expected to meet my family this soon. All I can say is things get pretty serious, and the drama never stops. The cocktail party becomes a setting for a major blow up between women where shots get fired. My chemistry with these ladies isn’t the only thing heating up — tensions are really starting to run high. You won’t want to miss it.

Thanks for reading,
Nick

The Bachelor airs Mondays (8 p.m. ET) on ABC.

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