Two weeks out from her split from fiancé Ben Higgins, Lauren Bushnell is just trying to figure it all out and move forward. That's what she told TMZ when the outlet spoke with the Bachelor winner at LAX on Tuesday night. Bushnell, who is in town scouting out apartments (she lived in L.A. before moving to Denver to be with Higgins), also talked about where she's at with Higgins, her dating life going forward, and what's happening to that very large ring.
"I feel like I have no idea what's going to happen in my life moving forward," the 27-year-old said when asked whether she's open to working things out with Higgins. "I'm open to all things." Except for dating — either in the real world or on a reality show. "I'm not open to dating anyone at this point to be honest. I need a second to, like, calm down [and] breathe." As for whether she'd do The Bachelorette if asked, she said, "Probably not right now. I'm just trying to, like, recover [and] move forward."
For Bushnell, moving forward means returning to L.A. and focusing on blogging. "I'm going to work on my blog, fashion, I don't know," she told TMZ. "Whatever comes my way. I'm just trying to take it day by day." It also means giving back that enormous sparkler. While she said she hasn't returned the Neil Lane diamond yet, she confirmed, "The ring goes back." When pressed about whether she was dreading sending it back, Bushnell replied candidly. "I don't know. Honestly, I'm just trying to move forward, just make the best of a situation that's kind of awful."
Just where is the ring going back to, exactly? Not her ex. According to reports by E! News and People, the 4.25-carat ring is being returned to ABC, as is standard when the winning couple breaks up after less than two years together. She will give the ring, estimated to be worth around $95,000, to ABC producers, who will then pass it along to Neil Lane. Higgins confirmed as much while talking to People two weeks ago. "I believe that we'll have to give that back. Probably soon, I don't know when or how," he said. "They give you this ring, but obviously if you don't make it, it makes sense that you have to give it back."