© Bang ShowbizGwen Stefani and Blake Shelton
Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton had "a lot of healing to do" before they got engaged.
The 'Hollaback Girl' hitmaker and the 44-year-old country star got engaged in October after five years together, and Gwen has now said their decision to take their romance to the next level wasn't an easy one, as they had "a lot to consider" when it comes to their future.
She said: "I think there was a lot to consider when you have so many people involved. Children, and their hearts, and everybody in my family [and] his family, we all went through a lot together.
"So I think in a romantic way, when you fall in love so hard and so unexpectedly - and so late in your life - you think 'I want to marry you!' That's the first romantic reaction, like, 'Let's get married.' So we always talked about it, of course, and I think that as the years were going by, it didn't need to happen. There was a lot of healing to do."
And although they spent a long time discussing the next stages of their romance, Gwen - who has sons Kingston, 14, Zuma, 12, and Apollo, six, with her ex-husband Gavin Rossdale - said Blake's proposal was "natural".
She added during an appearance on the 'Today' show: "It's funny because he basically had the ring and it was right around my birthday. I was getting a little bit anxious ... because I started having a little insecurity and so it was right on time."
Blake and Gwen, 51, first met when they worked together on 'The Voice' in 2014 and the following year, their friendship turned romantic as they leaned on one another for support following the breakdown of their respective marriages to Miranda Lambert and Gavin.
Meanwhile, the 'God's Country' singer previously admitted he was keen for Gwen's sons to be part of his proposal to their mother.
He recently said: "The only thing I had planned was that I knew I wanted to do it in Oklahoma while all her kids were there [and our siblings].
"I didn't want to take her away or do something private away from the kids. I felt like it was important for the kids to be a part of that moment, so that's what I did."
He also sought their permission to pop the question, as well as Gwen's dad Dennis.