Justine and Damian
How We Met
I met Damian in 2009 in Iowa City, IA at a bar (classy, huh?). We both were attending college at the University of Iowa. One of my girlfriends dared me to lick Damian’s face (I didn’t know him at the time) so I did and I guess it just went from there. We started casually dating for a couple months then became exclusive around May. Damian graduated that year then moved to Wisconsin. I was still in school because I’m one year younger than he is. Damian came back to visit me almost every single weekend in Iowa City. After I graduated I moved to Wisconsin with him and the rest is history!
How He Asked
Damian and I had planned a weekend getaway in Chicago, IL on August 27, 2016 just to go get dinner and drinks. We live about an hour and a half away from the city so we drove in on that Saturday afternoon. We checked in to the hotel, I went upstairs to freshen up and Damian went to park the car. It took him upwards of 30 minutes, which he blamed on taking the wrong street but I later found out he was taking the ring to the restaurant. On his way back he called me and said he made reservations at 6pm to get a drink at this place called The Bedford. He said his coworker told him to check the place out. I said okay because I was under the impression we had real dinner reservations at 8pm somewhere else. We got ready and went to the restaurant. The Bedford is an old bank turned bar/restaurant and its underground. The hostess seated us in the “vault room”, which literally is an old vault. All of the walls are lined with gold safety deposit boxes from it being a bank and there are even vault doors. We sat down in the corner and there was nobody else in the room.
The room was candlelit too. We ordered drinks and were looking around at the deposit boxes, pulling some out and looking inside. There was a box right at our table that pulled out and I immediately pulled it out then shoved it back in because I didn’t think it opened. After we got our drinks, Damian asked if that box i pulled out earlier had anything in it? I said no because I couldn’t get it open. I pulled the box out again and Damian flipped it open and inside was a ring box. I took it out and Damian got on his knee and proposed. I honestly don’t remember what he said, something that he loves me and wants to spend the rest of his life with me. I obviously said YES! Once the waiter heard me say yes, he came from around the corner with champagne and we toasted, then he asked if we were ready for the dinner portion? I was confused because I was still under the impression we were there for a drink. The waiter led us out of the vault room around the corner to the dining room where a group of people were clapping and cheering.
Damian had invited both of our parents and 9 of my closest girlfriends to surprise me! I started bawling and so did everybody else. Then we all had dinner and drinks at the restaurant and I found out our 8 pm dinner reservations were fake. In the middle of dinner, Damian stood up and gave a toast, thanking everybody for coming (my best friend even flew in from Texas) and said he had one more surprise for everybody. He had rented a party bus that was outside so we had to hurry up and finish our drinks.
The bus drove us around Downtown Chicago for a couple hours, we stopped at the hotel to freshen up and I had a quick outfit change then we partied the rest of the night at a bar. My friends even had a special “She Said Yes” SnapChat geotag made for us!
Come to find out, Damian had been planning and coordinating this for 4+ months, he picked a date that worked for everybody and even booked their hotels! Hands down best night of my life! Well…so far!