Tag Archives: Twins

A glimpse of what twins might be like in the womb

November 19, 2013

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As Thanksgiving nears, my husband and I reflect on how grateful we are for our nine children–including a set of twins that arrived when we were in our 40s. Because of these belated blessings we gobble up anything that has to do with twins (like the video at the end of this blog. But first…)

 On a personal note…

Our twins at age three. Picture taken by author Vince Flynn last year

Our twins at age three. Picture taken by author Vince Flynn last year

One thing is for sure: Our twins are not always as happy as they are in the above photo, but when they get chummy–it warms our hearts! When they were in their first “bed” (womb) they were not always as calm as the babies are in the video below. In fact, when they were born we could tell them apart by their “war wounds.” Each boy was decorated with bruises all over his face and body.

While in the maternity ward, I used to swaddle our babies together. I knew that they needed human touch more than a “singleton” did. This calmed them down even after they were circumcised and in pain. The surgeon for this procedure stood in amazement after each circumcision because she had never witnessed this “cuddling-calming” phenomenon before with multiples.

At age four, our twins still give each other comfort with their touch. Yesterday I heard a mewing sound coming from our boys. When I looked at them they were sitting at the table with their heads touching and arms draped over the other. Each had a thumb in his mouth and blankie in hand–humming with contentment.

Last week our second oldest and I took the twins to Target. The boys were in separate grocery carts and did not like being separated. When we rolled them out of the store, they held their hands to each other until they grasped. Then they started making that mewing sound again like they always do when they are cuddling. Our older son was flabbergasted, and other people smiled as they saw what the boys were doing. What a double blessing they have been to all of us!

The video

I wanted to share with you a moving video that  family and friends sent our way. It shows what multiples might be like in the womb. (But these babies are actually in a bath after being born.) As you watch this video that went viral, be thankful for the gift of life! Happy Thanksgiving!

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To learn more about this video and baby bathing technique, watch this Today video:

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Conjoined Twins: The Story of Faith and Hope

September 19, 2011

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There has been a few articles in the news lately about conjoined twins. My favorite is an inspirational account of a single mother, Amanda Schulten, who gave birth to conjoined twins on September 6. She named her daughters Faith and Hope. When she was pregnant, her first doctor told her to abort them–she refused, wanting to give them as long a life as possible. She writes about this journey, and how she embraces life, on a blog called Faith & Hope & Love.  Amanda 7 months pregnant

Amanda is 21 and lives near Chicago. She became a Catholic at the beginning of her pregnancy during this past Easter Vigil. Because her babies have health issues, Amanda spent a lot of time hooked up to a monitor during her pregnancy. She was able to view her daughters in utero quite often, and couldn’t understand how someone could have told her “to just get rid of them.” She writes beautifully about the love she has for her disabled babies–before they were born and after. Here is a touching quote from her blog site before the girls were born:

Thanks everyone who’s praying for my little precious gifts from God. I sit with them all day waiting patiently to hold them in my arms. I cry tears of joy, that God made them so perfect. I can’t express enough how much I adore and love them.

The Birth

Faith and Hope were born by cesarean section at 34 weeks gestation (36 weeks is the norm for twins.) They collectively weighed 8 Lbs 10 ounces at birth. They share a heart and many of their other internal organs. They have one set of legs (one leg is clubbed), a pair of good arms, and two stunted arms. “God is good and he knows what he is doing,” Schulten said. “September 6th was a day miracles happened and I gave birth to the 2 most beautiful conjoined twins. We celebrate each day at 9:24, [What a] beautiful life they share together!”

She wrote this about her daughters: “The girls have lots of soft brown hair and the prettiest eyes. God is good and he knows what he is doing. I’m so honored to call them my children. I cry tears of joy, that God made them so perfect. (at least in my eyes and anyone who has met them.)”

Pro-Life

Amanda writes many life-affirming entries on her blog which has received almost 80,000 page views. Her story is being reported by news sources all over America. She is spreading the Gospel of Life in her own, beautiful way. One of my favorite entries is this:

I received a message on Facebook from a lady who works at a clinic in DeKalb yesterday night. She thinks it’s great that I’m spreading a good message about life.  She also said she is proud of me that I didn’t let anyone pressure me into an abortion because she meets with girls everyday who are considering abortions. You know why is because the world says it’s ok.  I’m showing the world what a mother’s love really is, not giving up on your children. She asked to use my story for patients that are thinking about getting abortions! I was like, yes! Something good is coming from this. Faith and Hope’s story can save babies’ lives!

Amanda’s Pro-Life Reflection:

Why is it that certain people think anything that isn’t
within someone’s definition of “normal” must be destroyed?
Our culture says disabled children of any sort are
less valuable than ‘normal healthy’ kids.
We need to put a STOP to this NOW.
People need to stop being heartless.
No child gets left behind

On September 16, she wrote,”Today Faith and Hope were holding hands while sleeping. Of course I took a picture. It was the most beautiful picture I have ever taken. I love my girls so much!!”

Conjoined twins are identical twins whose bodies never separated all the way. Their survival rate is 25 percent. Follow the journey of these babies through Amanda’s blog. It truly is a story of Faith, Hope and Love.

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