Nikki Reed shared the most stunning carousel of intimate photos from her son’s home birth and we can’t turn our eyes away from the raw strength and beauty. The Twilight star welcomed her second baby — who she shares with husband Ian Somerhalder — in June 2023. In August, she spoke candidly about her experience. In the first episode of a two-part The Mother Daze podcast appearance, Reed told hosts Sarah Wright Olsen and Teresa Palmer that she wasn’t planning on using a midwife until “something in [her] plan still didn’t feel complete.”
“My first birth with my daughter [Bodhi back in 2017] was in the hospital and while it was unmedicated, which is what I was going for, it was still all kinds of chaotic, for all these different reasons,” she said. “I didn’t realize that for this whole pregnancy, that little bit that I haven’t totally unpacked was in the back of my mind like, ‘Is this going to happen again?’”
Reed ultimately asked midwife Abby Vidikan — who appeared on the podcast too — to join her birthing team and planned for a home birth. In the photos Reed posted on Instagram, Vidikan is front and center, helping the expectant mom throughout the labor. It was one of the “most transformative” nights of Reed’s life. In the photos, Reed quite literally leans on the women around her and they (quite literally!) lift her up. It’s so beautiful and powerful and showcases just how stunning pregnancy is.
“To be honest, the reason I felt compelled to share something so personal is because I have this burning desire to highlight the value of midwifery care, and showcase the incredible wisdom that these women bring to the birth space and beyond,” Reed wrote in her emotional caption. “Particularly in the postpartum period, so many women are left without support and together we need to change that. With a culture that doesn’t nurture new mamas in the way it should and a healthcare system that doesn’t value the need for PP care, it is time to create a shift.”
“As we normalize talking about birth and fight for women to be given paid maternity leave, we must also discuss the factors that can contribute to postpartum depression like the lack of support we are given,” she continued. “[Midwives] understand this gap in a way most do not.”
Mixed among the infuriating number of people asking about where Somerhalder was during this — Thank you to the follower who said, “So, I came for the comments. Woman makes a beautiful post about her best friends, the awesome experience and people wanna know about the guy? This one is not about Ian….” — were some beautiful and supportive comments.
“Phenomenal,” one follower said. “What an experience. I went through it myself. There’s just something magical about a water birth in the comfort of your own home. It was heavenly. ❤️🙌 Well done momma! You did it!”
“The pictures alone are so moving. Absolutely beautiful! I’m in tears,” one person said, and same!
At the close of her post, Reed said she is “eternally grateful” for birth workers who “hold the hands and hearts of women as they bring their babies into the world.” How tear-jerking is that?
“When I think back at my birth,” Reed continued. “I cannot help but feel an almost indescribable love for the care I was given.”
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