Laura Denise Pierre has made her debut!
Married at First Sight season 6 stars Shawniece Jackson and Jephte Pierre are first-time parents to a baby girl they welcomed (three weeks early!) on Monday, Aug. 20, her rep confirms to PEOPLE exclusively.
Born after just five hours of labor at 7:47 a.m., the newborn — who was named in honor of Pierre’s mom Laura and Jackson’s mom Denise — weighed 5 lbs., 15 oz., and measured 17¾ inches long.
“Seeing my daughter and holding her for the first time was magical,” Jackson tells PEOPLE. “There are no words that can describe that feeling. I remember, before she was born, thinking about her features and if she’d have hair. I was born bald. So the first thing my mama said as I pushed her out was, ‘Look at her hair.’ What a moment we all had in the delivery room. I’m just so honored to be her mom.”
“Seeing my daughter for the first time was so overwhelming,” Pierre adds. “Watching Shawniece push her out drew me to tears. Watching her birth has to be the best moment of my young life. It’s incredible to think she’s all ours.”
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Jackson, 30, revealed her pregnancy news exclusively to PEOPLE in late April ahead of the show’s “Decision Day” finale, sharing a gorgeous maternity photo and admitting she was “absolutely shocked” to find out she was expecting.
“I was in the emergency room because I felt awful and had no idea what was wrong,” she told PEOPLE. “They came back and told me all my symptoms were from pregnancy and that I was pregnant. I was totally shocked.”
Though the baby news came as a surprise, Jackson was fully embracing her role as a mother. “I’ve always wanted to be a mom. I’ve always felt like that’s my purpose in life — to recreate some little Shawnieces in life,” she said. “I think it’s the greatest gift a woman can have. Life is a beautiful thing!”
RELATED VIDEO: Married at First Sight Season 6 Episode 9 Sneak Peek: Shawniece and Jephte
In the MAFS season 6 finale, viewers learned that Jackson and Pierre, 27, had decided to stay married after the duo — who met for the first time on their wedding day, as the bride walked down the aisle — fought through the ups and downs of marriage throughout the previous months.
As Pierre told PEOPLE in May, “I want to be a proud, present father who shows and gives their child all the love I can possibly give.”
“I have no doubt in my mind that Shawniece will be an amazing mother,” he added about his wife. “She’ll be loving, caring and selfless. Any amazing quality a great mother should have, Shawniece already has and more.”
Married at First Sight season 7 is currently airing Tuesdays at 9 p.m. EST on Lifetime. For more on Jackson, Pierre and baby Laura, tune in to Married at First Sight: Happily Ever After Oct. 30 at 10 p.m. EST/9 p.m. CST on Lifetime.
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