History repeats itself for a couple who got engaged in the exact spot where they would later say, “We do.”

This story first appeared in the Fall/Winter 2018 issue of Columbus Weddings, published in June 2018.

When you know, you know—and Julian Napolitano and Stacia Momany knew.

For the couple, who wed Dec. 30, 2017, marriage was on the table early in their relationship; the only question was one of timing, which fell into place at the beginning of last year.

 “We just started talking, like, ‘I think we want to get married this year,’ ” the bride—now Stacia Napolitano—recalls.

From there, the two leaped into planning their wedding.

Step one was the ring. Stacia took the reins and custom-designed it herself. “I think I had told him before we were really super-serious, ‘When the time comes, I would like to design my ring, if you’re OK with it,’ ” she says. Julian agreed, and the two worked with a local jeweler to create the piece.

But while Stacia knew she was getting her dream ring, she didn’t know when.

Julian knew he wasn’t off the hook for a proper proposal—surprise and all. And Stacia was impatiently waiting; after quickly finding Julian’s hiding place for the ring, she would secretly try it on when she was home alone.

To maximize the suspense, Julian milked Stacia’s anticipation.

“We went to talk to the flower shop earlier in the month, and he got down on one knee … but then he tied his shoe,” Stacia says. “And then he left me a little note with a picture of a diamond ring for work, saying ‘I love you’ with the drawing of the ring.”

Meanwhile, Julian was anxiously struggling to find the right time to make the engagement official. “[I spent] three very long weeks trying to plan it,” he says.

His first idea was to pop the question on an outdoor walk—but he was thwarted by rain, so back to the drawing board he went. Fast-forward to just a couple days before the couple planned to tour their wedding venue, the Columbus Athenaeum, with their parents: a lightbulb flashed on. What better way to propose than surrounded by family and in the very spot they would say “we do” only a few months later?

And so, standing on the stage of the Priory at the Athenaeum, Julian finally asked Stacia the question she had been waiting to hear. Her response?

“I said, ‘Stop it! Stop it,’ ” Stacia recalls. “I thought he was joking.”

But this time, Julian stayed on bended knee as their parents took video of the moment. In short order, Stacia realized he was serious.

Just seven months later, on their wedding day, the two retraced their footsteps back to the exact same place, past and present beautifully muddled in a case of “I love you” déjà vu.

“We got married in December, and being out there with him, it brought it all back to me,” Stacia says. “It was really sweet.”