Rachel didn’t get up that morning intending to pilfer her sister’s husband. “That’s not how we do it around here,” Laban would later tell Jacob.

He could have spoken those same words seven years earlier. Laban could have told Jacob by firelight the first night his future son-in-law appeared proclaiming to the local boys they needed to head back to the fields. It was “too early to come in for the day.” But that’s not how they did it around there.

It seems like no amount of dark night or stout wine could conceal one’s beloved. Oh, but it did and then it was fourteen years later and Rachel was dead. And I wish with all my might that she wasn’t buried by the side of the road and that her maternal mortality wasn’t the way we did it around here.

Suzanah Raffield is a maternal health advocate, currently researching Rachel while writing her dissertation chapter on body theology in the Old Testament. Suzanah lives in Jacksonville, Florida.  She also writes for her blog, Sparkfly.