Lauren and Jackson

How We Met

I moved to Wake Forest to attend Seminary in August of 2015. Even though Jacks and I had a class together, that isn’t where we met.  The very first week of school, on a Friday, I was on my way to meet my mom for lunch, lost control of my car, slammed into a power pole and split my car in half. I don’t remember much of the accident, but I do remember opening my eyes in the back of an ambulance and arriving at the hospital. My mom and dad were there, along with some girls I had met the first few days of school. Jackson happened to ride along with one of my friends, and he ended up staying the entire 8 hours I was in the hospital, talking with my family and I. I was immediately drawn to his sweet spirit, and it helped that our initial meeting was at my very worst. A short while after this, we spent most days together learning about each other. A few weeks later he took me on our first date to a history museum downtown. On a cold, windy night in October I came outside at 4:26 a.m. to Jackson telling me that he loved me for the first time, because he just couldn’t wait until morning. That following December he took me to see my favorite play, The Nutcracker, and asked me to be his girlfriend. We have grown so much, loved so hard, and learned so many valuable things only selfless love can teach. 594 days after meeting a boy in an emergency room, I said yes to marrying him. In another 315 days, I will walk down an aisle to become his wife. I am so undeserving of this kind of once in a lifetime love.

How He Asked

Jacks told me we were going on a day trip to the beach, which isn’t out of the ordinary for us. He told me to dress up because he had made reservations for dinner. We arrive at my favorite place on earth (Southport, NC), go to my favorite restaurant for lunch (Yacht Basic Provision Co.), visited all my favorite local shops and boutiques, and headed for OKI to watch the sunset on the beach before our evening reservations. Oak Island, NC has always held a special place in my heart. From the time I was 6 months we have always taken our annual family beach vacation here. We arrived at our family beach, parked, and headed toward the water. We walked along for a couple of minutes, looking at shells and trying to avoid touching the freezing water with our bare feet, and then he stopped.

He pulled me close, began to speak with a shaking voice, paused again, and finally uttered: “You know how I’ve always told you I’d marry you…?” Before I could think, he was down on one knee in tears. Now, I have always heard brides remark on their proposal experiences and say “I had no idea what to do!”, which I’ve always thought was silly, but in that moment, it rendered one of the truest things I’ve ever experienced. My head was spinning and I don’t even remember beginning to cry or collapsing on the sand.

After reliving every beautiful moment that happened to lead me to this one, I raised my head and said “YES!” When I stood up, both of our entire families were running toward us on the beach!

He had arranged for every family member to be there to celebrate afterwards. What I thought would be dinner and a long drive home, turned out to be the best day of my life!

Special Thanks

Rachel Clarke
Photographer