An Alabama couple went from parents of three to parents of nine overnight. Courtney and her husband, Eric Waldrop, who wanted a big family welcomed three boys and three girls. The couple already had three boys. The couple had been having miscarriages after their first son Saylor in 2008. They were overjoyed on the birth of six children. They had then used fertility treatments to conceive their twin boys. Following a miscarriage of their fourth child in January, their doctor put them on a low dosage of fertility treatment to reduce the chances of Courtney carrying multiple fetuses.
While the couple were extremely happy on finding six fetuses, it came with the higher risk of stroke, blood pressure, urinary tract infections. The doctors then explained the option of selective reduction where the number of fetuses is reduced which increases the chances of survival for others. Courtney took to Facebook 11 weeks into pregnancy saying that her calorie intake was the biggest concern as she had to consume high amount to keep herself and the babies healthy.
The babies – Blu, Layke, Rawlings, Rayne, Rivers, and Tag were delivered with the help of about 40 labour and delivery personnel. “I can’t tell you how proud I am of her for the battle that she’s gone through the past 30 weeks,” said Eric. She was put on bed rest for seven days to slow down the progression of the babies. After carrying the babies for 30 weeks, Courtney delivered. While it is still premature, the babies have a chance of survival and decreased risk of complications such as difficulty in breathing and cerebral palsy.
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So are any of the Waldrop sextuplets identical?
Fans have likely noticed the Waldrop sextuplets all look pretty similar — but that actually has nothing to do with being identical. Identical twins/triplets/etc. happen when a single fertilized egg splits one or more times. On the other hand, multiples are considered fraternal when completely separate eggs are fertilized and then develop on the same timeline.
Although it’s entirely possible to have a mix of identical and fraternal siblings in a single set of multiples (just look at the Busby quints; Ava and Olivia are identical, while the rest of the girls are fraternal), all of the Waldrop sextuplets are fraternal, People reported.
What are the odds of having sextuplets, anyway?
During the very first episode of Sweet Home Sextuplets, Courtney and Eric discussed exactly how rare it is to become pregnant with sextuplets. In fact, there was only a 1 in 5 million chance that sextuplets would happen as a result of the fertility medication Courtney had been on.
“They say out of 4 million U.S. births a year, only 25 are quintuplets or sextuplets — and most of them are quintuplets,” Courtney explained on the show.
Seriously, though — even though they aren’t identical, the Waldrop sextuplets are seriously adorable. Be sure to tune into all-new episodes of Sweet Home Sextuplets on Tuesdays at 10 p.m. (EST) on TLC. And prepare for cuteness overload.