I consider birth to be a miracle -- it's just an amazing thing our bodies can do even when things go right with labor and delivery. When there is a complication, the strength of our bodies and of our babies is even more evident. When I heard about this mom with a double uterus who defied the odds and carried a baby in each womb, it was hard not to be in awe.
Alison Camp was born with a double uterus, which is extremely unusual -- only about 0.3 percent of women are known to have this. This condition, medically known as uterus didelphys, makes having a successful pregnancy rare, and the fact that Camp had a baby boy in each womb made it even more extraordinary, but also more risky.
The babies were born seven minutes apart by c-section at 25 weeks back in October. Both boys were around 1 pound, 5 ounces and the Camps were very concerned about their health so they didn't want to share their story until now ....
Alison learned of her condition when she 19. This abnormality with the uterus happens when the baby is still in the womb being formed and the Mullerian ducts, which are two small tubes that fuse together to form the uterus, do not fuse properly. A double uterus could result in two cervices and two vaginas, but some, like Alison, only have one vagina. It could also make women infertile.
But Alison was able to get pregnant, though her first pregnancy sadly ended in miscarriage. She and her husband, Tim, went on to have two healthy children -- Kennedy, 5, and Addison, 2 -- both from a different uterus. Amazing! Then they found out they were pregnant again, but this time it was going to be very, very different and high-risk.
How frightening that must have been, like going into the unknown. A miracle? I think so. A rare condition, a risky pregnancy, very premature babies ... too often stories like this end in heartbreak. Thankfully this one is on its way to a happy ending.
The boys, named Carter and Griffin, are now a little more than 3 months old (how proud the family must be!), and though born together aren't considered identical twins. Carter has been released from Women & Children's Hospital in Buffalo, New York, weighing 7 pounds. Brother Griffin is still in the NICU until he gains more weight -- he's 5 1/2 pounds. I'm pulling for him to get there!
Alison calls her boys "little fighters", and they certainly are.
Have you ever heard of a double uterus? And ... join me in wishing the Camps the very best! Especially Griffin!
Image via andrewmalone/Flickr