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Nicola Bailey, 32, went into labor with her twins, Harper and Quinn at 33 weeks. She and her husband, Todd, were relieved to learn their baby girls were healthy. But just half an hour after their births, doctors came to the new parents with some news the medical staff felt they needed to apo*logize for: one of their babies had do*wn sy*ndrome.
After breaking this news about their baby girl, Harper, doctors gave the couple literature with a neg*ative message about the condition. This left them sc*ared and con*fused. Nicola wasn’t deterred. “But as soon as I saw them both my heart just mel ted. They were both so beautiful,” she said.
She frequently posts on social media about their girls. “These two had something to smile about yesterday as Quinn now weighs a huge 8.7lb doubling her birth weight and Harper is 7.8lb she’s slowly but surely getting there and they have both now been discharged from the special care team so just under the health visitor now so proud of what they have achieved in such little time #movingforward”
This mother wasn’t going to allow Harper’s diagnosis define her. She decided to change the narrative. Nicola uses her blog and social media to spread the word about her girls and to share the positive aspects of having a child with do*wn sy*ndrome.
“I’m definitely an ambassador for the ‘there’s nothing down about’ movement, as I’m a strong believer of that if we make the condition a positive thing then hopefully it’s a step forward to accepting people’s differences in this world,” she wrote.
“Well we had a lovely day yesterday, I loved twinning with girls I may have to do it more often I think. This amazing photo of us all which is so rare to get us all together was taken by my brother @the_scott_mason who heads back to the states today it’s been lovely spending time with him and for him and Ashley to meet the girls. We have lots of fun planned for today as we head off to one of Lucas besties birthday parties over at a farm, then we are have to watch the England game after #sundayfunday.”
Though the mother chooses to focus on the positive, this doesn’t mean her life isn’t without hardships. Both girls were born prematurely. Harper was born with two holes in her heart; one closed on its own. The other will require surgery to close when she’s older. This is common with children with do*wn syndrome. Harper will also need more developmental therapy. This too doesn’t stop Nicola from ensuring both her girls live the best lives possible.
“I’m hoping the rest of our journey can stay as positive as it has been so far,” Nicola wrote. “Harper is such a beautiful baby girl, who has achieved so much in her little life and I am sure she was going achieve so much more. I’m currently one proud mama.”
She has sought support from groups made up of twins and mothers. Harper and Quinn’s bond will be different than other twins. They’re already exhibiting that closeness common with pairs.
“They both light up when they’re around each other and are looking at each other more and more,” Nicola told SWNS.
“We yesterday was a success we have a 6.15lb and 6.7lb babies yeah! Their both gaining weight well and their very happy with them both of them. Harper is gaining weight a lot slower than Quinn, but this is because of her heart defect she so sleepy all the time but she is picking up with her feeds now hopefully she will keep it up #happybabies.”
What an incredible family! they will encounter bumps in the road, but as long as they work together, they can overcome anything.