Premature twin boys who were born weighing just over 1lb each have defied the odds after doctors told their parents to prepare for the worst. Lucy Hall and Joseph Barker, both 26, were horrified when their boys, Charlie and Harvey Barker, weighing 1lb 6oz and 1lb 4oz respectively, were delivered at barely 24 weeks in May.
“Seeing how well they’ve done makes you think about the abortion limit,” Ms. Hall added. “It makes me sick to think of someone getting rid of a baby so late in life. Harvey and Charlie are living proof that a 24-week-old infant can live. They’re both little fighters who have proven everyone wrong.”
“When they were born, they were both rushed straight to intensive care. I didn’t get to hold them or see them. Joseph just got to quickly take two photos. Because I was in shock, I couldn’t even feel unhappy over not being able to hold them. I couldn’t wrap my brain around what was going on. We finally saw them three hours later, and it hit us like a ton of bricks. They were so little that you couldn’t fathom a baby so small.”
The boys’ parents were informed shortly after their births that their kids were unlikely to survive. Ms. Hall, who gave up her admin job to care for her sons, said: “Their chances of survival were so slim that we were told to take it hour by hour. They told us not to think about the future because it was so uncertain.
“We were so scared thinking about losing one of them or both of them; it was devastating. It’s not a situation you ever expect yourself to be in when you have your first baby. People think of premature babies in incubators, but it’s not just that. It’s the incubator and oxygen machines and wires and head scans and eye scans.
“We were watching our babies fighting for their lives. You can’t explain what it’s like to be in that situation; it’s horrendous. It’s like your worst nightmare; I felt so helpless. All I wanted to do was embrace them and console them, but there was nothing I could do. All I had to do was show up every day.”
Despite physicians’ predictions, the brothers progressively improved, and after four weeks, their parents were allowed to hold them. “It gave us both so much optimism because we knew they were becoming stronger,” Ms. Hall added. “That helped us stay positive.”
“After everything we’ve gone through, having our family at home and being able to spend time together and enjoy it is incredible.”
“Every day Joseph and I are astonished and amazed by how brilliantly they’re both doing,” Ms. Hall said of her sons’ growth. “I am the proudest mother on the planet, and all we’ve been through has only increased my love for my sons.”