Having a baby is so exciting, yet can be nerve-racking, especially when you find out you are expecting twins!
When Matt and Jodi Parry, a couple from Lancashire, U.K., got the news of twins on the way, they had to prepare. Everything that must be done for a newborn is doubled when you find out you will be bringing twins into the world.
During all their preparation, nothing could have prepared them for the news they were about to receive the day their daughters, Abigail and Isobel, were born. They never expected to hear the doctor come in and tell them both girls were born with Down syndrome.
There is only a 3 percent chance of having identical twins. However, having identical twins, both born with this genetic defect, is one in one million!
Hearing this news was disappointing and upsetting for these parents. Even their son, Finlay, was confused upon hearing the news that his two baby sisters were born with this way.
Down syndrome can affect the body in many ways. Isobel was born with a hole in her heart and Abigail must wear a hearing aid. Both girls have thyroid problems and are require frequent, routine checkups.
Although the news was shocking, Matt and Jodi have come to realize that what they thought was a sad situation was really the best thing to happen to their family. “When they were first born we grieved when we found out they both had Down’s Syndrome but now we wouldn’t change it for the world,” Jodi said.
As the family has adjusted to having these two beautiful girls in their family, they have realized something extremely valuable. Both Abigail and Isobel have brought them closer together and given them a new perspective on having children with Down syndrome.
They were initially worried about how they would go to school or make friends. However, that quickly disappeared as they realized just how positive, fun, and joyful their little girls turned out to be!
“When the doctor took us to one side to give us the results, he said he was sorry that Abigail and Isobel had Down’s syndrome. To this day I’ll never know what he was sorry for,” Jodi shared.
Both girls have brought so much life to their household that neither parent can imagine living without them. This led to Matt and Jodi starting a charity called Twincess. Their goal is to spread the good news about having children with Down syndrome.
“When Down’s syndrome is diagnosed prenatally it comes with: ‘This child has got Down’s syndrome, you can have a termination within the next 10 weeks.’ And that is kind of heart-breaking,” Jodi said.
“I think if you get the option to terminate straight away,” she continued, “and nobody gives you the pros as well as the cons, then people will terminate.” That ignited a spark to educate others.
The Parry’s have set out on a mission to dispel the negative connotations of Down syndrome. These joyful little girls are proof that happiness, family unity, and so much more can come from a very unexpected gift.