Changing diapers is becoming old hat for an Alberta couple who recently had their third set of fraternal twins.
Two-week-old Maverick and Blakely were born to Pam and Taylor Armstrong April 20. The babies were welcomed into the world slightly early, at 37 weeks, at Red Deer Regional Hospital.
Waiting for them at home with great anticipation, were the couple’s five-year-old twin daughters Brynlee and Adileigh, as well as their nine-year-old twin son and daughter Parker and Emery.
Pam said the couple’s four older siblings are “absolutely thrilled” to help out with the new babies.
“If you’re going to have one set of twins,” why not have more, reasoned the stay-at-home mom.
Pam said her kids will each now have a same-aged sibling to play with and nobody will feel left out.
All the Armstrong twins were conceived naturally, without the use of fertility drugs. The odds of a mother giving birth to fraternal twins thrice is one in 500,000, according to HealthResearchFunding.org.
|Maverick and Blakely Armstrong. (Contributed by Loni Bourne Photography).|
A former labour and delivery nurse, Pam was aware her chances of delivering multiple multiples went up after she gave birth to her first twins. But having three double births wasn‘t something she ever thought would happen.
Pam’s grandma was the only known relative on her side to have a previous set of fraternal twins, which means two eggs were fertilized by two sperm.
While there’s identical twin cousins on her husband’s side, Pam was told that the twin gene is passed down only from the mother.
If she and Taylor, a middle-school teacher, hadn’t known before how strongly twins run in the family — “we do now!” said Pam, with a chuckle.
The couple greeted their latest double blessings with excitement and good humour: “We thought, this is what we know — and we’re now getting pretty good at this, so we might as well do it again,” said Pam.
Raising six kids is going to be more expensive, however, and has required the family to move into a five-bedroom house from their previous townhouse.
|The Armstrong siblings get their first look at the youngest twins in the family. (Contributed by Loni Bourne Photography).|
Pam said a lot of baby equipment has been brought out of storage and the family is getting lots of support from relatives, as well as friends and fellow members of CrossRoads Church.
Getting a new baby brother and sister to play with is a “dream come true” for the Armstrongs’ five-year-olds, Brynlee and Adileigh.
“All they do is play (with doll) babies all day, so they think having real babies in the house is pretty great,” said Pam.
Parker, formerly the Armstrong’s only son, had felt out numbered. Pam said he’d even threatened to move in with his three male cousins unless at least one of the new babies was a boy.
Since bonding with Maverick, he’s decided to stay, she added, with a chuckle.
All the older siblings are helping out with diaperings and “are adjusting pretty well — although, I have to keep reminding them that they can’t fight over the two babies,” said Pam.
“I tell them they’re lucky, since most people only get to bring one new baby home.”