When I was 11 years old, I met someone who would impact my life more than words can express. In school, we bonded over classwork and social circles. We sat together in the bleachers for every high school football game, hugged and cried when we graduated and went our separate ways, but called each other incessantly for every life milestone for the next 10 years. When her oldest child was born, I was half a world away. But with her fourth and (perhaps) last, I was exactly where I wanted and needed to be: next to her husband and mother, holding her hand, as she welcomed her son, Gideon Archer, into this world.
Lauren and her husband Joseph met in college. I remember the day when she told me about her engagement, so nervous (but happy) to embrace a life with this man whom I had never met. I prayed that Joseph would bring to my friend all the happiness that she, more than anyone I know, deserved. At their wedding, they danced with stars in their eyes to the beautiful “Cross My Heart” by George Strait, the lyrics of which grace their home today.
Lauren has had the blessing of bringing into this world three beautiful children – Alena, David, and Genevieve. For their fourth child, she and Joseph decided on the name Gideon Archer, a strong boy name that already suits his stubborn nature. His mom went past her due date by nearly THREE WEEKS despite trying EVERYTHING to get labor going. In fact, she came so close to active labor at 42 weeks, we prematurely started celebrating. Oomph.
To everyone’s dismay, Gideon decided NOT to come that night. In fact, he waited another FIVE days, putting Lauren over 43 weeks before he decided to try again. Poor Lauren, having tried EVERYTHING to get labor jump started at 42 weeks, was disappointed to say the least. When labor finally started up again, her and Joseph couldn’t stop smiling at the thought of holding their baby boy soon.
After three hours of labor, this mother of three became a mother of four. Lauren did an AMAZING job and we were all in awe of her incredible strength. She and Joseph were an inspiring team as they worked together to bring baby Gideon Archer into the world. With Gideon earth-side, we all celebrated with smiles and tears at the beauty of his arrival.
Congratulations Finn. You did good work, girlfriend.