Jessica Batten of Love Is Blind fame is engaged to her boyfriend of a year and a half, Dr Benjamin McGrath.
The 34-year old reality star – who left fiance Mark Cuevas at the altar during her Netflix show – announced that she was engaged to the 35-year-old podiatrist on Thursday.
‘I don’t think it has quite sunk in, but I’m definitely floating somewhere on cloud nine,’ Batten told People magazine.
Congratulations! Jessica Batten of Love Is Blind fame is engaged to her boyfriend of a year and a half, Dr. Benjamin McGrath
She continued, ‘It’s been really, really exciting!’
Jessica went on to recount the story of Benjamin’s romantic proposal at the Akash Winery in Temecula, California on September 10.
She explained that he had planned the surprise proposal with her family and friends.
‘It was quite sneaky,’ the Chicago native told People. ‘We’d been planning on my dad being in town that weekend for the Bears-Rams football game, but then my dad made a change to his itinerary at the last minute.
‘I thought that was a little strange, but then he said he would plan dinner for all of us on Friday night.
Finding love: The 34-year old reality star, who is best known for her stint on the Netflix show in which she left fiancé Mark Cuevas at the alter, announced that she was engaged to the 35-year-old podiatrist on Thursday
‘I didn’t think too much about it,’ Jessica continued. ‘Then Friday came and Ben said, “Hey, I ran late in surgery and hit traffic, can you just meet me at this winery? We’re having dinner there.”‘
She got in the car with her father and my step-mom to head to the winery. ‘I could tell my dad was prolonging things. I think Ben was still setting up. But anyway, we make it out to the winery, and it was just a gorgeous night.
‘I walk out and this woman meets me and takes my purse, which I thought was a little strange. She said, ‘Let me escort you down into the vineyard.’ I’m like, ‘Oh we’re getting a wine tour!”
Romantic: She explained that he had planned the surprise proposal with her family and friends
She went on to say, ‘I walked down into the vineyard, and one of the aisles of grapes had rose petals all the way down to this gorgeous arch with roses all around it.
‘Ben was standing there, and I pretty much knew at that point what was happening. So I just started getting overwhelmed with emotion. When I walked down, the first thing he said was, ‘I want you to remember this moment for the rest of your life.”’
Batten said that McGrath proposed at sunset with a 3.22 carat round brilliant cut diamond engagement ring by Los Angeles-based jeweler Mark Broumand, as their favorite song JP Saxe’s Line by Line played in the background.
Jessica described her reaction as ‘totally overwhelmed’ though she had planned a response that included a reference to the couple’s favorite show.
Sweet: Batten said that McGrath proposed at sunset with a 3.22 carat round brilliant cut diamond engagement ring by Los Angeles-based jeweler Mark Broumand, as their favorite song JP Saxe’s Line by Line played in the background
She said, ‘The best part was — and I had planned this for whatever he asked me — I recited this line from Suits because we had watched eight or nine seasons together when we were long distance: ‘Do I have brains in my head? Do I have a heart in my chest? So that’s what I said instead of ‘yes.’ We were both crying!”
After the couple kissed, they were cheered by family and friends who had flown in from all over the country to celebrate the happy couple’s special moment. Jessica said she was surprised to see ‘all of her best friends’ and Benjamin’s family including his brother who had traveled from Jordan to be there.
‘There were all of these people there to celebrate us,’ she said. ‘It was super cool.’ The newly engaged pair then joined their family and friends for a party to commemorate their milestone.
Meet cute: The television personality told People that Benjamin had reached out to her on Instagram after watching her on Love Is Blind
Jessica first revealed that she was dating Benjamin by sharing a photo of the two in a Fourth of July Instagram post. The television personality told People that Benjamin had reached out to her on Instagram after watching her on Love Is Blind.
The pair then met up for a bike ride in March 2020 and then grew closer during quarantine after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Jessica said that the timing actually worked in the couple’s favor since Benjamin was supposed to visit his brother in Jordan before international travel was restricted due to the pandemic.
Batten described herself and Benjamin as the ‘epitome of a COVID couple.’ She explained that they also initially had a long-distance relationship since she lived in Los Angeles and McGrath was based 80 miles away in Murrieta, California.
Father: Jessica said that she has grown close to Benjamin’s two children from a previous relationship
She said that they made it work by watching Suits over FaceTime and visiting each other on the weekends. They have since moved in together and Jessica has bonded with Benjamin’s two children from a previous relationship while he has become a ‘new dad’ to her beloved dog Payton.
Though Batten’s time on Love Is Blind earned her backlash from fans, she said she has remained in touch with some of her castmates and plans on telling them about her engagement soon.
She told People, ‘I’ll probably reach out to Gigi [Gibelli], Diamond [Jack] and Kelly [Chase] and let them know.
Sharing the news: Though Batten’s time on Love Is Blind earned her backlash from fans, she said she has remained in touch with some of her castmates and plans on telling them about her engagement soon. Seen with ex-fiance Mark Cuevas in 2020
‘But so far we’re still on family. We both have pretty big families and a lot of close friends. But yeah, I think I’ll definitely let those three know, as well as Kenny [Barnes].’
Jessica said that it was the ‘little things that showed he was different’ that convinced her that McGrath was the one.
She explained, ‘He kept showing up. And seeing him form a relationship with Payton and seeing him be a dad, all those things were really important.
‘We moved in together about five months ago, and we got so much closer when we moved in together. So it’s probably been since May or June that I really knew that this [engagement] was something that I wanted.’