A reconciliation years in the making.
Throughout this season of Total Bellas, Brie Bella and Daniel Bryan (born Bryan Danielson) have continually expressed their frustrations with their relationship; namely, their inability to connect not just as parents, but a couple.
However, on tonight's all-new episode, the two took major strides forward in their marriage on a weekend trip to Sedona.
Bryan had surprised Brie with a trip to the Arizona town—chosen for its significance to the couple, as they said "I do" there—in the hopes of repairing his and Brie's relationship.
"When you're in a relationship together and one person wants to go this way, and the other person wants to go that way, then there becomes conflict in this chasm between the two paths," he explained in a confessional, in addition to discussing his ongoing struggles with depression—something that previously led him to seek out the guidance of shaman, which he and Brie were doing on their trip.
Bryan continued, "Maybe in doing some of these things the same way they can heal my depression, what I'm really hoping for, is maybe they can also heal a relationship."
But once the two began to engage in a healing ceremony of sorts, Bryan was quickly overcome with emotion, and at one point, inconsolable.
"I'm like, 'Oh, something serious is going on,'" Brie said in a confessional.
Bryan wasn't able to fully understand the weight of what was happening at the moment, but he later described the experience as being in a "deep, trance-like state" while dealing with emotions such as "loss and love and grief and all these things coming together."
"As Bryan's wife, I have seen him, for a long time, battle depression. And it comes and goes," Brie revealed. "I will admit, it's very scary and I've never experienced something like this. But to see darkness come out of Bryan—to use all those elements to help bring that out—I feel like will only make Bryan better and make him happier, but that will also play into our marriage."
The two had a meaningful conversation after departing from the shaman, with Bryan expressing his love for Brie and confessing that he doesn't talk to her about his depression because she already has enough on her plate.
"I realized I just haven't been listening to him. Bryan, right now, is very vulnerable," Brie told the Total Bellas cameras. "And to hear him just be like, 'Brie, all I want is a simpler life...' it really hits me hard."
The couple continued to work on their relationship throughout the trip, making sure to explore any hard feelings they had been holding onto. For Brie, it was hard to let go of the time a few years ago when Bryan left for a few months after having what he called a "mental breakdown."
"It was hard...but I think what hurt is that, like, he didn't feel being with me was the healing part; it was leaving me [that] was healing," she explained, resulting in another meaningful conversation and a heartfelt apology from Bryan.
Once it was time to depart Sedona, both Brie and Bryan described the trip as something they desperately needed.
"I feel like we needed to hit a really hard place of questioning if we were right for each other, if our future was right...and I needed to be reminded that marriage isn't easy and it's not just gonna be there," Brie reflected. "You do have to work on it. And I have a really good husband. He's such an amazing man. And I realized, like, hey, you need to step up or you're gonna lose someone really great."
As Total Bellas fans know, last week's episode documented Brie and Artem Chigvintsev's trip to a jewelry store, where the two looked at potential engagement rings for Nikki. This—combined with Artem's announcement that his family would now be joining him and Nikki on an upcoming trip to France—left Brie and the twins' mother, Kathy Colace, speculating about a proposal.
"Is she gonna feel pressured to say yes because his family is there?" Kathy pondered aloud.
Worried about the same thing, Brie suggested the two of them, along with the twins' brother, his wife and their father, tag along on the trip.
"I kind of feel like we all need to go because I don't want my sister to feel alone," Brie said in a confessional. "I don't want her to be by herself with his family getting proposed to, feeling pressured to say 'yes.'"
Their suspicions that Artem was planning to propose in France were confirmed later on, when he giddily told Brie that he bought an engagement ring.
Even though she knew it was coming, Brie was still shocked.
"Hearing Artem say that he's gonna propose to my sister just makes this all real!" she expressed to the Total Bellas cameras. "Like, I was guessing it just from the ring shopping...but, I just...I don't know if they're ready."
She even pressed Artem, asking him if he's confident in his decision to pop the question.
"You're really ready for this?" Brie asked. "You're willing to propose to my sister and all the things that might stress you out and drive you crazy?"
And even if Artem's willing to commit, is Nikki? Back in the confessional, this is the question Brie posed.
"...I don't know if my sister is," she said. "And that's what gets me nervous."
Watch the full episode of Total Bellas here!