The past few weeks at the Sharp Memorial Hospital in San Diego, California, had all been in preparation for this moment. So when this mom delivered a healthy baby girl, she must have been delighted. However, the doctor then began to pull out more…
Angie and Gino were the doting parents of two little boys. However, for them, the family was still not complete. So the couple were surely happy to later discover that Angie was pregnant once again.
In the first few weeks, the pregnancy progressed as doctors had expected. When Angie attended a routine check-up, though, that all changed. Indeed, her doctor, Sean Daneshmand, told her that she needed some specialist care.
“Unfortunately, at 26 and a half weeks, all of a sudden there was a fluid discrepancy,” he later explained in an interview with Sharp HealthCare. “So that was time to say, ‘Angie, we belong in the hospital now.’”
The reason Angie needed extra attention was because her pregnancy was high-risk, and she would need around-the-clock care. That’s because she wasn’t expecting one baby; she was expecting three babies.
Yes, Angie and Gino had learned that they were expecting triplets. Furthermore, two of the babies were sharing a placenta. That meant that there was a chance one of the babies wouldn’t grow as big as the other two.
It was also likely that the triplets would arrive prematurely and suffer brain bleeds or have underdeveloped lungs. All in all, then, it was a pretty stressful period for the couple. It was important, therefore, for medical staff to ease their worries.
So, 27 weeks into her pregnancy, Angie was admitted into hospital. This meant, of course, that she had to be away from her beloved husband and boys – but all she could do now was focus on her unborn babies. “Anything could happen between now and my due date,” she explained.
“We hear a lot of stories,” expectant mom Angie told Sharp HealthCare during her time in hospital. “You know, of triplets that don’t make it. Especially the identical twins. The body absorbs one of them.”
Speaking about mothers like Angie, Toni Hicks from the Perinatal Special Care Unit at the Sharp Memorial Hospital, said empathy was key. “They’re taken away from everything that’s normal,” she explained. “So by telling them, you know, ‘I understand this is really hard for you,’ that’s huge for patients.”
The medical team referred to Angie and Gino’s babies as Babies A, B and C. Over time, they discovered that Baby B wasn’t getting enough fluid and was smaller than the other two. Only time would tell how she would fare.
Regardless, doctors were keen for Angie to carry until 32 weeks, with anything after that being a major bonus. And as it turned out, Angie went into labor 32 weeks and one day into her pregnancy. It seemed, then, that everything was going to plan.
To keep the delivery under control, doctors arranged a caesarian section for Angie. Of course, the mom couldn’t wait to meet her babies. “As soon as I see them I just want to touch them or give them a kiss… to make sure they’re okay,” she said.
But as Angie delivered her babies, the midwifery team transferred each newborn to their own advanced life-support team. Then doctors assessed them, helped with their breathing and stabilized them. After that, the babies could go to the neonatal intensive-care unit.
As they treated the triplets, doctors revealed that they were working hard to open their little lungs. At this point, all Angie and Gino could do was look on with tears in their eyes. But soon, their daughters – Daniella, Anabella and Camilla – were stable and could be moved to intensive care.
However, the triplets weren’t out of the woods just yet. “We still have to remember these babies are still small and they still are predisposed to other complications. And, again, long-term issues. But, so far, we’re excited that everything has turned out very well,” Dr. Daneshmand explained.
Later, Gino wheeled Angie up to the neonatal unit. There, they could meet their babies properly for the very first time. As she held one tot close to her chest, the mom simply uttered, “It feels so right.” And with that, she wiped a tear from her cheek.
Angie later explained what was going through her mind at that special moment in her life. “It was only a few hours apart from them, but I really missed them,” she said. “So it feels good to be reunited.”
Similarly, as dad Gino held his daughter Anabella, seeing her open her eyes delighted him. She looked straight up at her father, creating an instant bond. “Beautiful,” he said. “Beautiful feeling.”
Thanks to the team at Sharp Memorial Hospital, the triplets had the best possible start in life. “It’s truly a dream come true to have them come into my life,” Angie said.