A mother of sextuplets in Northern Ireland says that she and her husband rejected doctors’ advice to abort several of her babies, whom she called “a wonderful gift from God.”
All six of Austin and Nuala Conway's children were born 14 weeks early by Caesarean section. They are now in stable health in intensive care.
Mrs. Conway said doctors “more or less” advised her and her husband to abort, according to news reports.
“They told us about the risks we faced if we went ahead with the pregnancy. Doctors gave us a couple of days to think about it, but we knew without discussion what we both wanted.”
The Conways’ six children, who were conceived without in-vitro fertilization treatment, have been named Ursula, Austin, Shannon, Karla, Eogan and Kerrie.
Mrs. Conway, a Catholic, said she had been praying to become pregnant after she and her husband had problems conceiving.
“These babies are a wonderful gift from God,” she said, according to the Christian Institute. “Whatever God laid out for our lives we were taking it.”
“I’m in love with every single one of them,” she added. “I fell in love when they were in the womb. When one moved they would all move and I could definitely feel 24 limbs kicking.”
Mrs. Conway said that since returning from the hospital, her house feels “so empty” without her children. She described the children’s condition at the hospital as “like a rollercoaster.”
“The babies have been on and off antibiotics and ventilators.
“They are thriving really well but it’s hard to get a good day. There are so many of them there are always days when one or two will not be doing so well.”
The children weighed between 1 lb 7 oz and 2 lbs 2 oz when they were born at Royal Jubilee Maternity Hospital in Belfast, where a team of 38 people helped in the delivery.
According to the Christian Institute, neonatal consultant Dr. Clifford Maynes said the birth had taken a “massive amount of planning.”
He reported the babies all have normal head scans and have made progress. “But it is still very early,” he said, explaining that the present goal is to get the babies off drips and antibiotics and to have them gain weight.