An unusual story about a couple who fought for a child for a long time and who, after ʟᴏsɪɴɢ twins born in the 22nd week of pregnancy, had two daughters, and after them no more and no less than five!
When Army and Chad Kempel wanted to start a family, the beginning was not easy. After two years of unsuccessful attempts to ᴄᴏɴᴄᴇɪᴠᴇ, Amy underwent ɪɴsᴇᴍɪɴᴀᴛɪᴏɴ and the procedure was successful, she became pregnant with twin boys. Unfortunately, the pregnancy ended in a premature birth at 22 weeks. The boys, Marshall and Spencer, were born alive but were not developed enough to survive.
The broken parents did not give up the desire for children and tried again and got a daughter, Savannah, and two years later, a daughter, Avery. But anyone who has experienced a ᴍɪsᴄᴀʀʀɪᴀɢᴇ or the ʟᴏss of a child during or at birth knows that pregnancy is no longer the same.
“After the ʟᴏss of Marshall and Spencer, and before our eldest daughter Savannah was born, my experience of pregnancy changed. When we tried to have a baby again, I was nervous every day. Will I ʟᴏsᴇ the baby today? Will it be born prematurely? I couldn’t enjoy it in pregnancy and the whole process of expecting a baby,” said Amy, but as Savannah and Avery grew up, it was time to decide whether to try to have a third child.
Amy was inclined to stay with two children, but Chad really wanted another child. “I was a lot alone with my older daughter because I’m a housewife mom, and when we had another child, I was in the minority during the day. I didn’t have that much time with her anymore, so I felt guilty. I felt depressed because it’s hard to be a mom with no time. And with all the attempts to get pregnant and have ᴀʙᴏʀᴛɪᴏɴs, it was OK for me to have two children,” she added.
But the couple decided to have a third child, and they got the biggest surprise that no one could even dream of. Amy got pregnant with five babies!
“We immediately thought her body would carry out a pregnancy of five, if she couldn’t bring out two by the term… We were ᴛᴇʀʀɪꜰɪᴇᴅ too,” Chad said.
They found the best doctors to help Amy keep her pregnancy as long as possible. “When we were thinking about the end goal, we were prepared for the reality that we might not bring home all the babies,” Amy said.
Fortunately, Amy gave birth to five babies at 27 weeks, and the babies were on ɴᴇᴏɴᴀᴛᴏʟᴏɢʏ for 63 days at the time.
The parents couldn’t believe it at first, but then they saw the babies progressing and realized they were going to bring home five healthy babies: Lincoln, Noelle, Grayson, Preston, and Gabriella.
The family of nine has moved from California to Idaho, and the mother says they are learning day by day how to be the parents of five children of the same age plus two older daughters. They don’t have much time for themselves, and taking care of a large family is financially very demanding.
What does a day at their house look like? The most important thing is routine. Amy and Chad made a sleep and feeding schedule for the fives. If one baby started crying at night, Amy says they waited a moment for two more to wake up, and then they went to feed them, because if they started feeding one baby, they would literally be awake all night feeding the kids.
The couple has the help of a nanny when she goes to marital therapy, but when Chad is at work, Amy takes care of the babies herself.
“They wake up, they eat, I change their diapers, we play, and then they eat again, and so on all day. Since there are five of them, everything takes a long time. I don’t have time for anything else in between,” Mom says.
Parents have admitted that they feel guilty for not devoting the same amount of time to each baby as they do to older daughters. “My favorite thing is to lie on the floor with them and let them crawl around me. I love it,” says Dad Chad. The big sisters are not big enough to help yet, but they are very proud of their younger brothers and sisters. Savannah tells everyone they have fives at home.
“I can’t wait for family vacations, going to the pool, Christmas mornings when they’ll understand what Christmas is and when we dress them for church. I think this is great, like we live in a fairy tale. I love it all,” Chad added.