Maynard was mostly concerned about a return of Brad or Bentley!

By Emily Maynard
Updated May 15, 2012 09:15 AM
Craig Sjodin/ABC

First of all, I can’t even begin to say how grateful and blessed I feel to be The Bachelorette. It’s still hard for me to wrap my head around the entire idea and I just hope I can do as good of a job as the ladies who have held this honor in the past.

It was a big decision to come back. And to be honest, I didn’t know if I wanted to put myself through all of this again. I was in love with Brad and what we had was very real and true, but when things didn’t work out with him, I was reminded that sometimes when people grow they grow apart. I never want that to happen to me again and it is scary to try to find love in the same way that it had fallen apart for me not that long ago.

I can’t tell you how many times I said no, but I know that God allows us to meet people at the right time and I just hope more than anything that this is the right time for me. I put a lot of pressure on myself to make it work this time because I’ve been in this situation before and in a way feel as though I’ve already had my chance. I’m so lucky to be here again and promise it’s going to be a great season!

It’s always scary meeting new people for the first time, especially like this! I wasn’t sure if I would like any of the guys or if any of the guys would like me, but so many of my fears were calmed after just the first limo. Every guy that stepped out made me feel so comfortable and put the biggest smile on my face as they tried to impress me. As nervous as I was, I remember getting out of the limo to meet Brad not that long ago and it was honestly one of the most nerve-wracking experiences of my life. I tried to remember that as I spoke to each of the guys and make it my goal to help them feel as comfortable as possible in this crazy experience.

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I definitely felt a connection with a few of the guys and it made me confident that my decision to come back was worth it. So many of the guys stood out to me. Even though he was the last to show up, I think I have to start by acknowledging Kalon. What an entrance! As the helicopter was landing a million thoughts were going through my mind. I remember standing there confused, not knowing what to expect, but I also knew whoever stepped out was obviously trying to make a huge impression … I was extremely nervous that it was Brad or possibly Bentley! I was relieved to see a fresh face.

As extravagant as the helicopter was, Jef showing up on the skateboard was way more impressive in my mind! I immediately loved that he wasn’t trying to impress me with some over the top entrance, but was clearly confident enough in himself that he didn’t need all of that extra “stuff.” He’s obviously a free spirit but I was surprised at how soft spoken and sweet he was after talking to him.

Anyone who knows me knows I have an extreme love for shoes, so Tony hit it out of the park with his glass slipper entrance. He did a great job making a memorable impression because as he walked away he made me realize how much I want the fairytale ending and how this time I really hope the glass slipper fits and I find my Prince Charming!

Last but not least, Doug. What a sweetheart! The letter his son wrote to me was one of the sweetest things I have ever received and if anyone can appreciate how hard it is being away from their child, it’s me. I’m so grateful that Doug took a chance on love, and I was honored that he saw something in me that made it worth it for him to come. It meant a lot and I wanted him to know that I would take a chance on him too and that’s why I gave him the first impression rose.

All in all it was a great night and I feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have 25 incredible guys vying for my attention. Thanks for watching and most of all, for all of your support! It means the absolute world to me to feel so much love from y’all.