Delayed twin births are rare, and the gap only lasts from an hour to a week based on hospital records. But this new mom from Tennessee beat the odds when she delivered her twins five weeks apart.
Kristen Miller is just a new mom. She married her high school sweetheart and just a few months later, they learned that she and her husband Ian are expecting twins. The couple remembers not having any difficulty with the pregnancy until Kristen was at 22 weeks. She experienced contractions and her water bag broke.
She was immediately rushed to the hospital. The doctors were able to prevent her from laboring for two weeks more through the use of different drugs. On Valentine's day, just a day after Kristen reached 24 weeks of pregnancy, she gave birth to son Micah. "Our goal, before he was born, was, 'we've got to make it to 24 [weeks]!' Sure enough, he made it to 24 and one day," Ian said.
The doctors decided that it was best to let Madelyn, the other twin to stay inside Kristen's womb for as long as possible. "Just because we're having one [baby] doesn't mean we have to have the second or the third. But it's hard to find the person who's a really good candidate," said Dr. Kristina Shumard, a maternal fetal medicine obstetrician at the University of Tennessee Medical Center.
It so happened that Micah and Madelyn had separate amniotic sacs and placentas so they are candidates for a delayed interval delivery. Also, these delayed births are extremely rare, and they only last for about an hour up to a week.
Because of her situation, Kristen was put on strict bed rest. She was not even allowed to hold Micah. Thankfully, Madelyn grew bigger inside the womb and after an extra 38 days, Kristen gave birth to her daughter. She and her brother are expected to stay in the neonatal intensive care unit for at least two more months to ensure that they are in good health.
"We feel so blessed to be here," said Kristen. "The only thing that's gotten me through this is to say, 'God is in control.'"