If anyone knows about turning lemons into lemonade, it's Melissa Rycroft. As a contestant on Jason Mesnick's season of The Bachelor, she suffered a humiliating fate. While Jason originally chose her over runner-up Molly Malaney, he then decided to break up with her in favor of getting back together with Malaney after the show had wrapped filming. Fans watched Rycroft accept a proposal on the pre-taped show, only to witness her getting dumped live on national television on After The Final Rose immediately after. To make matters worse, Jason and Molly decided to give it another chance. It was a shocking finale for viewers, and it all came at the expense of her heart.
In his 2009 Entertainment Weekly blog, host Chris Harrison wrote about the how difficult it was to tape that finale.
"Believe me when I tell you that was the hardest, most uncomfortable show I’ve ever hosted. I like Melissa very much, and in fact we’ve talked several times since the taping including Friday before the second ATFR (After The Final Rose) special. Of course, she was hurt and pissed that night we shot the special, but she feels, as do I, that everything happens for a reason and that she’s better off...I know it’s hard to see this but these are real people trying the best they can to deal with real issues."
When Chris wrote that everything happens for a reason, he couldn't possibly have known all the good things coming Melissa's way. Here are all the wonderful things that happened for Melissa since her very public heartbreak.
She Found True Love
After her brutal, very public breakup, Melissa reconnected with Tye, an insurance salesman whom she had dated before going on The Bachelor. According to IMDb, after the couple got married in 2009, they had a show on CMT about their relationship and Melissa's personal career journey. Clips from their show reflect a hectic newlywed beginning, filled with long distance challenges, career pursuits, and a baby. The show ended before their family expanded, but expand it did.
She Built A Family
Melissa and Tye have a big family keeping them busy. They have three kids: Ava, Beckett, and Cayson. Melissa posted the above Instagram, jokingly captioning it, "Party’s over...house is clean...Boys are eating leftovers...Mom is passed out...#success." She constantly posts adorable snaps of her kids. Melissa spoke to People back in 2016 about her hectic family life. She said,
"It’s constant chaos! I’m fighting with Ava to get dressed, Beckett insists on making his own breakfast and is spilling cereal all over the floor and Cayson needs to be fed. There are times it feels like there are 18 children in my house! It’s funny how quickly you adapt. If it’s quiet, it’s almost weird!"
She's Had Career Success
Melissa's IMDb showcases a variety of television appearances and jobs after The Bachelor. She has been on Access Hollywood Live, Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team (she's a former Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader), FabLife, Good Morning America (as a contributor), Entertainment Tonight (as a reporter), and a variety of other television gigs. Melissa is now featured on Morning Dose TV and even has her own podcast called The Dirty Hair Podcast, which Melissa says is about "everything women related, judgement free, makeup free."
She's A Published Author
Using her platform, Melissa published a book in 2012 called My Reality, in which she details her own stories of love and heartbreak. Melissa spoke to the Associated Press, shown above, about her desire to write a book and previewed some of the content. She said,
"I've been thinking about writing a book for awhile now... There is a lot that has happened that people don't know. You know, I feel like sometimes people look at me and think 'what a fairytale. We've seen her from The Bachelor find love, then oh, redemption on Dancing With The Stars, and look at her now. That's a snippet of my life. But it really wasn't as fairy tale as it appears on TV."
Melissa's book gives insight into the behind-the-scenes of her very dramatic love story. It also offers advice for women to help them navigate dating mistakes.
Speaking of dramatic love stories, Arie's season of The Bachelor looks like it's going to be wrapping up with quite the finale. Let's practice patience with the very real humans who are about to have their personal life play out on national television. No matter how it plays out, Melissa is a good example of how love and success can be found post-Bachelor insanity.