When Rebecca Roberts found out she was pregnant, she couldn't wait for what was to come. Little did she know, everything would take a wild turn after experiencing a rare double pregnancy. Here's her remarkable story...
Meet Rebecca & Rhys
39-Year-old Rebecca Roberts and her partner, Rhys Weaver, were living a relatively simple life when everything changed. The couple resided in Trowbridge, United Kingdom when they discovered they'd be having a child together.
But before uncovering the big news, Roberts actually had her sights set elsewhere. The mother-to-be had been focusing on expanding her Etsy business. There, she made and sold her very own clothing for both children and pets. But that's not all she poured her attention into.
She Had a Daughter
Roberts' journey to parenthood actually started years earlier - 14 years to be exact. The hardworking mother had welcomed her very own daughter, Summer Grace, into the world. But the truth was that Summer wasn't Rebecca's only child. Any guess who we're referring to?
Of course, her other 'daughter' was a puppy named Daisy, who Rebecca and Summer showered with love. But in only a matter of time, the duo would welcome another family member. Only this time around, it'd take the growing family on one whirlwind of a ride.
Roberts Was Pregnant
It all started in February of 2020 when Rebecca was met with startling news: She was pregnant. After taking an at-home pregnancy test, all of her suspicions were finally confirmed. And she and Rhys couldn't wait for their next chapter together. But there was one problem.
A pandemic had begun to sweep across the world, placing most countries into lockdown. "I was offered an early scan at seven weeks," Roberts explained of the events that followed. "Rhys was able to come to the scan too, as hospitals were still open." The couple was beaming with joy as they saw their tiny baby for the first time.
The 10-Week Ultrasound
As the story goes, weeks later, Rebecca headed back to the doctor's office for her latest checkup. But her 10-week ultrasound left her with scary news: She was experiencing a geriatric pregnancy - a term used to describe expecting mothers over age 35. And it came with a fair share of concerns.
Nonetheless, she and Rhys couldn't help but remain excited about their family's future. In only a matter of months, they'd be welcoming their very own child together! Rebecca was officially in love with the baby growing inside of her; She simply felt so blessed.
Her Confusing 12-Week Scan
Of course, though, Rebecca still had to face the facts: Her geriatric pregnancy came with many risks. And so, the expecting mom visited her sonographer as often as possible. But two weeks later, as Roberts headed back for her regular checkup, things took a sudden turn.
For starters, due to the global pandemic, Rebecca was forced to sit in the doctor's room completely alone. "Unfortunately, Rhys wasn't allowed in the hospital as lockdown had begun," she revealed. Perhaps that's what made the startling news she was soon met with even harder to process.
Expecting Two Babies
"Nothing could've prepared me for this news," Roberts confessed of the moment everything changed. Both she and the sonographer couldn't believe their eyes: Rebecca was officially pregnant with twins. "It was only a few weeks before that I saw 1 little baby wiggling around." She wanted to know how doctors hadn't noticed sooner.
"The sonographer was gobsmacked, I was gobsmacked," she explained. And with good reason. "What on earth had happened, how did they miss the other baby?!" Rebecca suddenly thought. She was going to be a mother to not one - but two babies. How would Rhys take the news?
Breaking the News To Rhys
For starters, Rebecca herself was in a state of shock. "It was a good job I was lying down, otherwise I would have been on the floor," as she put it. How would her husband, waiting cluelessly outside, react? Roberts was about to find out, as she headed outside to the parking lot.
Sure enough, he was just as speechless. "When I told Rhys... he didn't believe me," Rebecca explained. "It was only when I showed him the printout, and we could clearly see two babies we realized we were having twins." But after breaking the news, Roberts headed back inside the doctor's office.
Something Was Wrong With Baby #2
The mom-to-be had "many emotions running through her," as she reflected. "I actually felt like the moment wasn't real," Rebecca admitted. Little did Roberts know, her emotions were about to reach an all-time high as she headed back indoors to finish her check-up.
So, what happened? "The midwife was so intrigued with this shock and then what was to follow," she revealed of the next few moments. Something was wrong with baby number two. It was a thought Rebecca couldn't bear to face. Only her child's abnormally small size was simply impossible to ignore.
Her Twins Were Different Ages
Sure, most twins have their fair share of differences. But the contrast between baby number one and number two? It was simply unbelievable. "They could not understand what was going on and why the size difference was so big," Rebecca explained. Was her second child at risk?
"After multiple scans, the twin specialist at Bath Royal United Hospital came to the conclusion that I had ovulated again," Roberts revealed. In other words? "Basically, I got pregnant whilst being pregnant." It was a phenomenon called "superfetation." But what would it mean, exactly?
They Shared a Due Date
As the specialist explained, the siblings were simply different ages. In fact, baby two was actually three weeks younger than its sibling, explaining the drastic size difference. Suddenly everything made more sense. Now Rebecca understood why they hadn't noticed her second child in earlier scans. But that's not all she learned.
Her miracle babies would also be born at the same time: October 30th. "They will be treated like a normal DCDA twin pregnancy. It will just be a bit of a worry that T2 will be premature, though," Rebecca revealed. Safe to say, her worry was far from over.
Her Twins Were Medical Marvels
Rebecca had endless questions. Perhaps that's why it's no surprise she rushed home and began researching whatever she could. "We were told it was very, very rare, but we found out there were only a handful of other stories," she explained after googling superfetation. "There are just 13 documented cases in the world ever."
But the truth? It's "impossible to put an accurate figure on how many occur," as Asma Khalil, a professor of obstetrics, revealed. "It's rare... once someone falls pregnant, further ovulation... is suppressed, so it's very unlikely eggs will be released," he said of the marvel, which calls for about one or two cases annually.
Doctors Were Baffled
But that's not all. The condition is so rare that even after the diagnosis, doctors still couldn't believe their eyes. "They were adamant it wasn't superfetation," Rebecca revealed of their confusion that followed, as doctors continued running endless tests. "It was like they were trying to prove that something was wrong."
As for what that called for? "There was talk of a virus, of chromosome problems like Edwards, cystic fibrosis, and other hugely stressful things," Roberts recalled. "At one point, they weren't sure if the baby would survive." She didn't know what to believe. "Our world came crashing down... I couldn't enjoy my pregnancy."
Unfortunately, Rebecca's pregnancy was high-risk. And not just due to her age. Aside from the fact that she was now carrying two babies, doctors were alarmed about baby number two's growth. "It's hard to comprehend the amount of uncertainty I felt back then when I was pregnant," the worried mother revealed.
And given the fact that twins are likely to be born early? Her younger child was in serious danger. The parents and doctors alike couldn't help but worry about its potential low birth weight and trouble breathing. But what were Rebecca and Rhys supposed to do?
Would They Continue With the Pregnancy
The expecting parents had a decision to make. Would they discontinue the dangerous pregnancy? Aside from the fact that their babies were now at high-risk, so was Rebecca. As Healthline put it, carrying superfetation twins called for several potential complications, such as high blood pressure and gestational diabetes.
But despite the uncertainty they now faced, their minds were actually as clear as ever: "If there was anything wrong, it wouldn't make us feel any different, we would still continue with the pregnancy of that twin," Rebecca assured. "I love my babies so much, I will protect them for all their lives."
Were They Having Boys or Girls
Their minds were made up; They were going to carry on with their journey, no matter the uncertainty they'd face along the way. But sure enough, after extensive tests, they finally got some answers: Doctors officially accepted the medical mystery to be superfetation. And so, Rebecca and Rhys began prepping for their two babies.
They began preparing the nursery and purchasing necessary supplies. But there was one thing they chose to be unprepared for. "I've only got neutral clothes for now as we are keeping their genders a surprise," Rebecca revealed. "Maybe it's one of each! I really don't mind, I hope for healthy happy babies."
She Couldn't Feel Baby #2
As the days continued to pass, the expecting parents continued to brace for their latest chapter. However, everything changed the moment Rebecca began to feel baby number one inside her belly. "I could feel [Twin 1's] tiny kicks, but nothing from [Twin 2] yet," she confessed.
The truth was that the second baby had an anterior placenta, so Roberts rarely felt it. "I do worry about T2 movements every day," Rebecca admitted. "Maybe I'm just comparing it with T1." Sure, baby one was bigger and older, explaining the heavier kicks and movements, "but it makes me feel like T2 isn't moving that much."
More Problems for Baby #2
After finally understanding why baby two was so different, Rebecca decided to meet with a consultant. The obstetrician was skilled in caring for expecting mothers, but unfortunately, the appointment didn't go as planned. "How I'd love to say that everything went perfectly well and both twins are fine," Roberts revealed.
What happened? Something was wrong with the second baby, again. "I'm waiting for an emergency appointment to see a specialist at a Fetal medical hospital," the emotional mother explained. "I've cried and cried, my face is sore. I just need answers now. I love my babies so much."
Getting a Second Opinion
Sure enough, Rebecca was finally about to get those answers. A few days later, as Roberts met with the fetal specialist, everything was about to become more clear. After "one of the most nerve-wracking days" of her life, she was actually met with pleasant news: Baby two was not as endangered as Rebecca had thought.
Sure, it wasn't necessarily good news. "But it's not as bad as we were anticipating," Rebecca recalled. "The issue with the baby isn't fatal." Nonetheless, the expecting mother still had to get further tests. Every two weeks, Roberts would make her way to the fetal hospital for more scans.
Another Medical Scare
Everything seemed to be going relatively smoothly. Unfortunately, that was all about to change. The latest check-up revealed startling news: Baby number two's heartbeat was dipping. "I got sent straight over to the main hospital where they strapped me to an ECG for 2 hours," Rebecca explained.
But what doctors soon had to say left her completely frazzled. She was going into early labor, or at least that's what they assumed. In fact, they even began planning on the use of steroids to assist the babies' lungs in the case of a C-section. Luckily, they were incorrect, and soon enough, Rebecca was finally headed back home.
Her Due Date Was Getting Closer
Safe to say, Rebecca's pregnancy didn't quite pan out the way she'd planned. It was an emotional roller coaster ride, one she and Rhys were forced to face. But as October 30th continued inching closer, the expecting parents remained nothing but optimistic.
"We've made it to 32 weeks!" Rebecca gushed to her online followers. "I hope my little ones stay in there a bit longer." The reality? "My consultant says they could be here any day now!" The mother was hopeful of making it to at least 34 weeks, but she was about to be met with a brutal reality check.
Meet Noah & Rosalie
On September 17th, 2020, as Rebecca went to the hospital for an issue with Baby two's umbilical cord, she walked out as a mother of twins: Baby boy Noah and baby girl Rosalie; Noah, just 33 weeks and 6 days, and Rosalie, 30 weeks and 6 days. It was truly a sight to be seen.
Unfortunately, everything Roberts once worried about was about to become her reality. "Rosalie was considerably smaller than Noah," Rebecca revealed. At just 2 pounds and 7 ounces (compared to Noah's 4 pounds, 10 ounces), the baby girl was at risk. "She spent the first 2 weeks of her life in a special baby hospital."
Rosalie Went To a Specialized Facility
"She had gotten into a bit of trouble," Rebecca revealed of her daughter's newfound reality. While baby brother Noah remained in NICU, the premature baby was sent to a specialized facility. Doctors had to run more tests, ensuring there were no other factors that caused her tiny appearance.
Roberts and Rhys watched as doctors ran endless genetic tests on their helpless infant. "Nothing could have prepared us for the journey Rosalie was about to take - the heartbreak we had over and over watching her screaming and being poked and prodded," the emotional mother confessed.
"Rosalie was clear of any abnormalities, so that put that straight," Rebecca soon gushed. After endless whispers of cystic fibrosis or Edward Syndrome, doctors finally had some good news. But that's not all. "The twin specialist is still convinced she was conceived later, and these babies really are miracles."
As remarkable as it was, Noah and Rosalie were indeed superfetation twins. But that didn't mean their parents' worry was finally over. In fact, it wasn't. Rosalie was still at risk, having been born at only 30 weeks. She'd need round-the-clock care and a customized diet.
She Moved To the NICU
Sure enough, after receiving exactly that, Rosalie's reality was looking significantly better. And just two weeks later, the baby was finally transferred to a regular NICU. As for her brother Noah? He got to go home after about three weeks, while Rosalie stayed a lot longer. It was overwhelming for their parents, and then some.
How did they put it? "The stress has been unreal. Back and forth to NICU every day, and sometimes I have been staying in to be with Rosalie," Rebecca revealed. "Traveling to 2 different hospitals was hard on everyone!" Not to mention, the siblings barely had time to bond ever since leaving the womb.
Their First Steps Together
But all of that was about to change. A few weeks later, as Rebecca and Rhys headed towards the hospital, they were met with a special surprise. "I almost didn't believe [the nurse] at first," Roberts confessed. The nurses had finally allowed them to take a walk outside with their two little babies.
But that didn't mean it was easy. "Rosalie was this tiny baby in an incubator, covered with wires and beeping," Rebecca explained. "How on earth would she or could she be able to go in a pram?" Sure enough, with the help of portable equipment, Rosalie and Noah took their first steps together in the beautiful outdoors.
Just 95 days later, little Rosalie was finally reunited with her older brother again, for good, this time. She was finally released from NICU, joining the rest of her eager family at home and right in time for Christmas. "Words can't explain how happy we are to have both the twins home," Rebecca gushed to HuffPost UK.
"Noah is really thriving, and so is Rosalie. She's growing well," Roberts revealed. After nearly 4 seemingly endless months, Noah now weighed 11 pounds, 14 ounces, while Rosalie was 6 pounds, 10 ounces. But unfortunately, Rosalie's time at home wouldn't last long.
Rosalie's Emergency Surgery
What happened? A hernia had left the helpless little girl to be rushed back to the hospital. She needed an emergency operation, fast. "At first, the doctors thought her hernia was quite small," Rebecca explained. "But during the operation, they found that it was very large, and she unfortunately also had another big hernia."
But that wasn't the only problem. Given the ongoing pandemic, strict guidelines had been put into play. "I couldn't bear not being able to look after her," Rebecca recalled of the worry she was met with. Luckily, she was able to stay by Rosalie's side the entire time.
Reunited at Home
Just one day later, Rosalie's nervous mother was finally met with some good news. Her daughter was okay, and the two were able to go home. And that's exactly what they did. "I'm so glad she won't remember this," Rebecca revealed. "She's been through so much in her little life already."
There was no doubt about it: Rosalie was a fighter. "A friend said Rosalie is meant to be in this world. She fought all the way to be here," Roberts gushed. After the endless hurdles thrown her way, the little girl had made it to the other side - even stronger. But as she continued to grow, her parents noticed something odd.
Their "Mental" Size Difference
"The weight difference between them is mental," Rebecca confessed of her babies' mind-blowing appearances. "You can easily move Rosalie around with one hand, but Noah? You would need to hold him with both." Roberts explained that even the smallest diapers were massive on her baby girl.
But that wasn't the only thing remarkable about Rebecca and Rhys' miracle babies. Because Rosalie was three weeks younger, she reached developmental milestones later than her brother. In fact, Noah began talking and possessing motor skills long before his sister.
Twice the Miracles
Sure, Noah was a bit ahead in his developmental journey, but that didn't matter. For starters, Rosalie wasn't too far behind. But perhaps, more importantly? Both little babies were finally healthy. And as they continued to grow, so did the bond they now shared.
"It's the most strangest, amazing, miracle and it happened to us. I do feel very lucky," Rebecca gushed of her superfetation twins - only 1 of 14 recorded pairs. "My babies really are a miracle, and I want to tell the world." We've got a feeling their story (documented on Instagram @rarespecialtwins) is just getting started.