Zelin Reid

“The funny thing about my birth story is, like most others, it didn’t go as planned the first time around. I was so frustrated with my first birth experience, which is why I decided to have a natural birth.
I developed Chorioamnionitis, a bacterial infection that occurs before or during labor. The name refers to the membranes surrounding the fetus: the “chorion” (outer membrane) and the “amnion” (fluid-filled sac).
I was told my newborn had sepsis. It was all a painful blur. He had to be treated with an antibiotic that could possibly cause deafness. You can imagine how a new mom felt. I was so heartbroken. My baby boy Zayn stayed in NICU for 11 days. While in the NICU, skin to skin was impossible, breastfeeding was not an option, and pumping wasn’t producing a supply that was needed. I was crushed, to say the least, that everything I longed for with this birth was not in my control or reach.

Zayn today is a very active toddler – did I say active- lol? Finding out I was expecting for the second time, I was scared and excited all in the same minute. I think I instantly prayed not to develop the same infection as before, but I did know this time I would be in control of my birth and body. I remember telling my mom I wanted to have a natural birth and not have any vaginal checks until labor to avoid any chance of infection. My mom was ok with the no vaginal checks, but not the natural birth part. I think she said, “Are you crazy? Birth is painful and drugs are for that!” She did come around, although nervous but excited for me.

I went in on the 12th of October to see my midwife and decided to have my membranes stripped since I was over my due date. I wanted to see if we could get things rolling. I went home to sleep, literally all day. I woke to eat something and started noticing contractions a little stronger and longer than normal, but unsure if I was in labor. I called my midwife Angela to let her know that my contractions were becoming close and consistent. I was told to go to the birth center and arrived around 7:00 pm. I felt excited and nervous!

At Uf health birth center a birth story unfolds

I truly felt my body knew what to do and how to deliver my child into the world, so I put all my trust into the Lord and my body and let it take over. My doula Courtney arrived and made me instantly feel empowered and focused. I had the Lord above, my husband, mom, grandma, doula, and midwife there by my side to give me the strength to overcome anything. I labored in the water, on the bed, and I also tried to walk this baby out.

during labor at UF Birth Center a grandmother comforts her granddaughter
waiting to meet her son while laboring in the water
while mom labors in the tub doula courtney and her husband offer support
at UF health north birth center walking through contractions
to help bring baby down mom labors on the toilet
surrounded and supported by her team mom has a contraction on the birth ball
with her husband and doula mom works through contractions on the bed
at the birth center mom works through painful contractions
while mom labors on the toilet midwife angela check's baby's position
mom gives a final push before meeting her son while grandparents watch

I ended up giving birth on the bathroom toilet – I know, what?? It felt easy to control and pushing was a breeze. I also had a great midwife to ease my mind that my baby wouldn’t fall in the toilet.

with midwife angela her son is born on the toilet at UF birth center
As their baby boy was welcomed into the world everyone cried
with grandma present baby boy arrives after mom birthed on the toilet

It was an amazing, beautiful experience! Zelin was born on October 13th, 2018, at 3:09 am. When I saw baby Zelin, my heart was overcome with love!

With midwife angela of UF north birth center mom finally got the birth she dreamed of
after a long labor parents take in their vernix covered son
after being born dad cuts baby's cord
after being born dad holds his son for the first time and does skin to skin
after the birth mom and dad admire their new son
getting a good look at the new baby grandmothers are full of pure joy

I can’t express the joy I felt knowing my birth plan was made a reality. Our God is truly amazing. I experienced skin to skin, breastfeeding, and looking into the eyes of my child, whom I just gave life.

after being born latching and breastfeeding for the first time
with her mother and doula by her side breastfeeding her newborn for the first time
after baby is born big brother meets his newest sibling for the first time
after baby is born midwife angela does the newborn exam
done at UF Birth center brand new baby boy gets newborn exam
at the birth center newborn footprints are done
At the UF Birth center in jacksonville, FL baby Zelin is in the nest

I am very thankful and blessed to have these memories I will forever cherish. “

~Brielle

Doula: Courtney H. – https://totalmomwellness.com/

Thank you, Brielle, for sharing your story! It was an honor to be with you as you welcomed your 2nd son into the world!

If you are expecting and thinking of having your little one’s birth day captured, I would love to chat!

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Hi I'm Melissa!

I'm an introverted, T-shirt wearing, animal loving, nature admiring, lucky wife, mother of 3, photography and birth obsessed lady.