For one couple, the desire to have a baby took them on a long and arduous journey. After three years of marriage, Justin and Nancy Rohde decided it was time to add a baby to their family. At that time, they could have had no way of knowing the heartbreak and frustration that would plague them until their attempts to have a baby were successful. They were overjoyed to find they were expecting not one, but two, baby girls. Their twinblings, as they call the baby girls, were born a shocking five weeks apart.
For three years, Justin and Nancy tried to have a baby. The Rohdes learned that Nancy’s uterine lining was extremely thin. As a result, the likelihood of carrying a baby to term was low. After four rounds of invetro fertilization, each time having been dealt a crushing blow as no baby resulted from their efforts, they decided to turn to a surrogate to carry their baby, reports Cosmopolitan Magazine. While the surrogate was able to get pregnant, she was not able to carry the baby to term, and the pregnancy ended with miscarriage. Yet another crushing blow for a loving couple whose fondest desire was to have a baby.
The devastation was all-consuming. Nancy said she couldn’t bear to look at Facebook for fear of seeing their friends’ baby pictures, knowing that they were trying so hard with absolutely no success.
“I got to a point where I had Justin change my Facebook password because I knew it would break me to see all these people my age with kids. We should have been right there with them. It just destroys your soul.”
New hope surfaced in August of 2015 when they met Ashley Brown. She was married with children of her own, and wanted to be a surrogate to help a couple who could not conceive. About the same time, Justin and Nancy decided to give having a baby through IVF one last-ditch effort.
— mindbodygreen (@mindbodygreen) June 27, 2016
Amazingly, both ladies learned they were expecting a baby. The baby girl Nancy carried was due first, the baby girl Ashley carried followed behind by five weeks. Although they were not expecting two baby girls, the Rohdes did not relax, as both were terrified something would happen before the baby girls could be born. Justin says in the very beginning they never dreamed both pregnancies would produce a healthy baby.
“We did consider that going forward with Ashley meant we could have two babies, but only in a very hypothetical sense. I think we even said jokingly, ‘Worst case scenario here, we just have two babies out of this.'”
In the seventh and eighth month of pregnancy, respectively, the parents learned there were complications with each baby girl. Nancy’s baby girl was very tiny, her head only within the third percentile, and there was a problem with the placenta. Otherwise, the baby girl appeared to be healthy. At the same time, the baby girl Ashley was carrying was measuring very big, and was in the breach position.
Ultimately, Nancy delivered the first baby girl, Lillian Quinn, on May 2, reports Time. Five weeks later, in a different state, delivered by a different woman, but sharing Justin’s and Nancy’s DNA, Audrey Eleanor made her way into the world on June 7.
Despite all their fears and early troubles, the Rohdes are thrilled to have two baby girls. Their friendship with Ashley and her family will continue, and they plan to be completely honest with their twinbling baby girls regarding their unusual birth, Nancy says.
“Intended parents and surrogates don’t really want a relationship afterward, but we and Ashley definitely do. We’re going to be extremely open with [the twinblings] about their unique entry into the world. I mean, it’s going to be obvious something weird happened. They’re five weeks apart.”
While this story is unusual, it is not unheard of for fraternal twins to be born several days or weeks apart, as in the following story. This little boy was born early, revealing he had a tiny baby girl curled up behind him.
— Parents Magazine (@parentsmagazine) April 18, 2016
[Image via Shutterstock]