Serving as a gestational carrier for her daughter, a 51-year-old woman gave birth to her granddaughter this month.
The family welcomed “Briar,” a healthy baby girl, in an Illinois hospital on Nov. 2. Julie Loving, 51, delivered the newborn with her daughter, Breanna Lockwood, by her side.
“My mom was an absolute rockstar through a difficult delivery,” wrote Lockwood, in an Instagram post announcing the birth. “The sacrifices she took to bring this little slice of heaven into our world takes my breath away.”
Lockwood confirmed that both Briar and her mother are doing “fantastic and healthy.” According to Good Morning America, the delivery marked the first C-section for Loving, who is a mother of two.
The mother-daughter duo has been widely followed on Instagram — where Lockwood shares their surrogacy journey with over 129,000 followers.
In one post, Lockwood explained the process. After struggling with infertility, she and her husband, Aaron, had their reproductive DNA fertilized and frozen via In Vitro Fertilization (IVF). Loving enthusiastically volunteered to be the surrogate.
“My mom breezed through every preliminary test she took, to be able to give us this gift. Defying the odds at 51 years old, she’s pushing reproductive science out of the box.”
Lockwood, who has experienced multiple miscarriages, also uses her story for infertility and pregnancy/infant loss awareness — to remind those struggling similarly that they are not alone.
The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development reports that approximately 9% of men and 11% of women in the U.S. have experienced fertility problems. And according to the Winne Palmer Hospital for Women and Babies, 1 in 4 pregnancies (or 25%) end in miscarriage.
“1 in 4. Let’s break the stigma,” Lockwood writes. “You are not alone.”
When welcoming her 7 pound and 1 ounce newborn baby Briar, Lockwood finds inspiration and strength from her mother’s gift.
“Holding my daughter in my arms, my heart is bursting,” Lockwood writes. “The feeling of how I would do absolutely anything needed for this child is radiating through me when I look at her, and reflects back on what my mom did for me.”
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 51-year-old Illinois surrogate gives birth her granddaughter