A couple praised the bond between their identical twin babies. Chester Graves was born during the 28th week of pregnancy weighing only 1 kg, while his twin brother, Otis, was born weighing at least 3 kg.
After six weeks in the hospital, Otis was released, but little Chester remains fighting for his life in the hospital.
Kelly Graves, 32, and her husband Billy say they have no doubt that Chester’s survival was possible thanks to the bond between him and Otis. “I have no doubt that hugging his twin helped him keep fighting,” Kelly declared.
The couple captured the moments of interaction between the twins in photos and shared updates on Chester’s health status on their Instagram page.
“We’re very lucky that Chester is a fighter, and despite everything he’s been through, he’s still struggling to get back home to be with his parents, Otis, and the rest of the family. He is still in the ɪɴᴄᴜʙᴀᴛᴏʀ and has been kept on a high flow of ᴏxʏɢᴇɴ since he was transferred to the local hospital,” Kelly said.
According to the parents, the prediction is that Chester could be discharged next November if he continues to evolve in a positive way.
The bond between the twins may have helped Chester
Chester’s health problems were discovered around the 16th week of pregnancy. Kelly was told that the babies were different sizes, which worried the doctors.
The difference in size between the brothers was caused by a condition called Sᴇʟᴇᴄᴛɪᴠᴇ Iɴᴛʀᴀᴜᴛᴇʀɪɴᴇ Gʀᴏᴡᴛʜ Rᴇsᴛʀɪᴄᴛɪᴏɴ, which means that one of the babies did not receive the necessary nutrients from the ᴘʟᴀᴄᴇɴᴛᴀ, and its growth stopped.
At week 19, she was admitted to Kings College Hospital in London for a sᴜʀɢɪᴄᴀʟ ᴛʀᴇᴀᴛᴍᴇɴᴛ that separated the babies inside the ᴡᴏᴍʙ, allowing both to survive independently.
With each new ultrasound, the mother was told that there was a chance that Chester would be born lifeless because, despite continuing to develop, his growth was significantly slower than Otis’s.
“I ate about 200g of protein a day to help him grow and I drank about five liters of water to try to increase Chester’s water levels because they were also low. It hasn’t been proven to help, but I’ve tried everything I can,” Kelly said.
When her water ʙʀᴏᴋᴇ during the 28th week of her pregnancy, Kelly was admitted to the hospital to have the twins.
“Otis came out first and was placed in the ɪɴᴄᴜʙᴀᴛᴏʀ. When Chester left, they found a knot in his ᴄᴏʀᴅ that also stunted his growth and were desperate to stabilize him as quickly as possible and help him survive.”
Since birth, Chester has been in a constant struggle for life. He was diagnosed with a number of ᴀɪʟᴍᴇɴᴛs stemming from his situation and recently required eye sᴜʀɢᴇʀʏ.
They are also parents to three other children: Phoebe, 10, Florence, 8 and Albert, 5. According to the couple, everyone is incredibly supportive.
“The kids have been amazing. They’re so young, but they’re so desperate to take Chester home as they haven’t really gotten to know him yet.”
According to Kelly, Chester still needs to gain weight before he can be taken home, but doctors expect him to be discharged within the next two months.