After a truly unprecedented season of The Bachelorette, Tayshia Adams found her happy ending.
"If you had told me in March that I'd be getting engaged at the end of the year, I would not have believed it for a second," says Adams, 30, who got engaged to addiction recovery specialist Zac Clark, 36, on the show's finale on Tuesday. "But I want to experience life with [Zac] by my side. He's what I've always wanted."
Adams, who stepped in mid-season after Clare Crawley's abrupt departure, tells PEOPLE in this week's issue she felt a connection with Clark early on.
"Just the way he was speaking to me, you could tell he had maturity that I was really attracted to," she says. "And there was something I couldn't put my finger on. He had a mystery to him that I wanted to get to know more about. And him having the coin for me to throw in the fountain on the first night was simple and thoughtful. He tugged on my heartstrings with that!"
Says Clark: "When she walked in the room, oh my God, the physical attraction was immediate. And in our first interaction, I knew she was special."
- For more on the happy couple, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Monday
Still, an engagement wasn't a foregone conclusion — "I didn't have any expectations," says Adams — but in the end, Clark popped the question with a 3.25 carat Neil Lane ring. "I am committed to this [relationship]," he says. "Not just for today, but forever."
And despite the chaos of filming during a pandemic, Adams says things "100 percent" happened the way they were supposed to happen.
"Zac is my person," she says. "And this just feels so right."
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