On Lauren's 19th birthday I flew to Kansas to meet her. We spent a long weekend together, watching bad movies, fake-smoking cigarettes and rolling around the Kansas City suburbs blasting music from the boombox we rigged on the back of Lauren's wheelchair, making pathetic looking shadow-puppets with our hands against the street:
Months later, Lauren did the impossible. She taught herself, slowly, how to wiggle her toes and then how to bend her knees and soon to walk. With canes at first. And then about a year later, without them. Her feeding tubes were soon removed after slowly introducing her body to food again. And her skin to the light.
She moved to Los Angeles soon after to pursue film making and was offered a prestigious internship with Spielberg this summer on the set of Indiana Jones IV.
Lauren circa 2004:
People keep asking me how I found a nanny.
"Who is she?" they ask.
Who is she?
Lauren. Just.. Lauren.
I don't know what else to say.
Today, watching Lauren chase Archer around the park, it is impossible to believe that three years ago she was bedridden. That she had tubes in her chest and couldn't walk or expose herself to any kind of light. That she couldn't eat or feel her feet, numb and paralyzed. It seems like the whole thing was a dream.
Finding someone to trust enough to be with Archer is almost impossible, but having him in Lauren's care is such a blessing. I don't know if there is someone I would trust more.
Lauren taught herself to walk. She taught herself to heal. She defied every odd and shocked every doctor. She persevered. I watched her take her first steps. I watched her receive a standing ovation as she spoke in front of hundreds of beneficiaries and celebrities, walking onto the platform radiant and beautiful, the personification of endurance and faith. The REALest star of all.
I am blessed to have been able to be there for her, to witness her miracle:
...And in turn she gets to be here for me, to witness mine:
Lauren will be soon be nanny-blogging here at GGC under the tag: sheNANNYgans. Word.