After the nuttiest hometown date in The Bachelor history, Naomi Crespo, 24, found herself out of the running for Jason Mesnick’s heart and on a plane home.
The flight attendant spoke to People about whether the dead dove was symbolic of her chances, her wacky folks and her pick for who will win The Bachelor …
Q: Your hometown date was one for the books.
Naomi Crespo: It was embarrassing, oh my god. My mom is kinda out there. She obviously could not wait to make her television debut. I was apprehensive because I knew my mom had something up her sleeve. But I did not know it was going to be bringing out a dead bird and giving it a eulogy. That was so beyond me.
Jason Mesnick: [thinking] “Is this really happening?”
Q: Has your mom ever acted like that in front of your other boyfriends?
Naomi Crespo: My mom has met one serious boyfriend (my longest relationship), and obviously she has never done anything that crazy. My mom and I had a strained relationship for a long time. My parents divorced when I was young and my mom gave my dad custody. She was experiencing a mid-life crisis. We spent most of our childhood in New York with him. I spent my sophomore year with my sister, who was always my motherly figure. So she didn’t really have the opportunity to do that.
Q: Jason Mesnick claimed that your family didn’t have anything to do with you not getting a rose on The Bachelor.
Naomi Crespo: As far as letting me go, deep down it didn’t matter what I said, that’s what he felt [about] me not being ready at this time in my life. I think outside of this experience, I am ready. I want kids. I want a family. But because we weren’t meant for each other, it didn’t feel right. My parents are crazy – maybe had something to do with it – but I think ultimately he felt in his heart that I’m not the one for him.
Naomi Crespo: In hindsight, I can absolutely say I got caught up in the whole world; it’s hard not to. I fell in love with Seattle. I could totally imagine myself living there. I built Jason up in my head. I came on the show feeling like I already knew him. Jason letting me go was absolutely a blessing in disguise. I don’t regret the experience. I’m thankful we met. I’m thankful I met the girls, but I know we were not meant to be so I’m at peace with it.
Q: Many of the other women have commented that Jason is hard to read and were surprised by their elimination. Your thoughts?
Naomi Crespo: I would have to agree. At times he was hard to read. There’s only so much he is able to say because of the situation. I felt chemistry with him. I don’t know if I totally got to know Jason. I think he was honest with me about his reasons for letting me go.
Q: Can you talk about the competition aspect and other girls’ tactics?
Naomi Crespo: The girls were great overall. But watching [the show] was definitely different than being there. You know you have limited time to step up your game. Girls have different mentalities. There were some girls who were willing to steal him away and jump in. That is just not my nature. I compete most with myself. I have never been competitive for a guy.
Q: Are there girls you got particularly close with?
Naomi Crespo: Jillian and Melissa became like sisters to me. I know Megan had the drama but she is also someone I regard highly. You don’t get the whole picture [on TV].
Q: Stephanie called you a doll but less mature than the others. How do you feel about that comment?
Naomi Crespo: I was surprised. It hurt a little coming from Stephanie. It doesn’t change how I feel about her, but maybe she didn’t get to see sides of me that other girls did. As far the mother thing, I never talked too much about Ty or wanting to be this and that for Ty. In my mind it wasn’t appropriate to emphasize being a part of Ty’s life. I needed to get to know Jason first. If I fall in love with somebody, it won’t matter if you have a kid. I will love a kid. I know I have the potential to be a wonderful role model and stepparent.
Q: Have you started dating again?
Naomi Crespo: After I left, I felt like it was time to roll solo and get back in touch with myself. I grew a lot from the experience. That right guy will come along. I just have to be patient. God’s got somebody out there for me and I can’t get ahead of myself. And when the right guy comes along, it’s gonna be worth it.
Q: Who do you think Jason will end up with?
Naomi Crespo: [Jillian Harris] or [Melissa Rycroft]. I love them to death. I didn’t get as close to Molly, but she’s great too. He will be happy with any of them. I left trusting that I was leaving three great girls behind.