Ashley Gardner and her husband Tyson had tried to start a family for eight years before turning to IVF treatment. The couple was shocked and amazed that the treatment, in which two eggs were implanted in Ashley's uterus, worked the first time out.
In fact, it worked really, really well. Hoping for one baby, the couple got more than they bargained for!
When the couple went in for their first ultrasound, they were both in for quite a surprise. Not only had the fertility treatment been successful, it had been doubly so as both eggs became fertilized through treatment. And then their double good luck was doubled again as both eggs split, resulting in the couple now expecting two sets of identical twins.
In other words, quadruplets.
A photographer friend, Alicia Hallock, was present at the couple's ultrasound and had the presence of mind to capture the parents-to-be as they reacted to the news that they would be the parents of quadruplets.
Gardner told The Huffington Post in an email about finding out she was carrying quadruplets, "I've never felt so many emotions all at one time. I told the girl to look again!"
Gardner is incredibly thankful, saying that, "Some people have to do IVF several times to even get one baby. And to have it work and get quadruplets on the first try with my infertility issues was unreal."
Dr. Alan Penzias, who is the associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive biology at Harvard Medical School, says that the odds of having two sets of twins in one pregnancy are about one in 70 million.
An ultrasound performed later into Ashley Gardner's pregnancy revealed that both sets of identical twins are girls, meaning that in a matter of a few months, the Gardners will be welcoming their quadruplet daughters into the world. Ashley and her husband are said to be "ecstatic" about having four daughters, and Ashley added that "These girls are going to have one over protective daddy!"
To make sure that the proud parents are able to afford to take care of the necessities, friends and family of the quadruplet parents have rallied around the couple, with Ashley's sisters setting up a Facebook page for the family. They also organized an auction to help raise money for what they now call "The Quad Squad."
The idea of quadruplets has been overwhelming to the parents-to-be, but as their birth announcements, which read that "We appreciate the prayers, but some of you may have prayed too hard," indicate, they have managed to keep a sense of humor about it all...which is good, because with the idea of quadruplets soon to become a reality, they're going to need it!
[Images via The Huffington Post]