Brave Chloe Connolly, 25, successfully ᴅᴇʟɪᴠᴇʀᴇᴅEsmae and Averly herself, with her partner Darren McGuinness at her side, before the babies were taken to University ʜᴏsᴘɪᴛᴀʟ Wishaw. The twins were born nine weeks early at their parents’ home in Airdrie, North Lanarkshire.
Mum-of-four Chloe had felt sudden ᴘᴀɪɴs and rang for an ᴀᴍʙᴜʟᴀɴᴄᴇ straight away, but the tiny tots were born before ᴘᴀʀᴀᴍᴇᴅɪᴄs could get there. However, while in ʜᴏsᴘɪᴛᴀʟ baby Averly, who was born with ᴄʜʀᴏɴɪᴄ ʟᴜɴɢ ᴅɪsᴇᴀsᴇ, contracted C.O.V.I.D. Doctors transferred the tot to the Royal Children’s ʜᴏsᴘɪᴛᴀʟ in Glasgow were she was put into a ᴄᴏᴍᴀ and hooked up to a ᴠᴇɴᴛɪʟᴀᴛᴏʀ. Devastated Chloe ғᴇᴀʀᴇᴅ she would not sᴜʀᴠɪᴠᴇ and began planning ғᴜɴᴇʀᴀʟ ᴀʀʀᴀɴɢᴇᴍᴇɴᴛs – but after two weeks being treated by sᴘᴇᴄɪᴀʟɪsᴛs, Averly was reunited with her twin in the Wishaw neonatal unit.
The twins are now seven months old and both sᴜғғᴇʀ ғʀᴏᴍ ᴄʜʀᴏɴɪᴄ ʟᴜɴɢ ᴅɪsᴇᴀsᴇ, but it is hoped they may outgrow it. Chloe said: “I was feeling ʀᴜʙʙɪsʜ and overnight I started to get really ʙᴀᴅ ᴘᴀɪɴs, it all happened so fast. We were on the phone to ᴘᴀʀᴀᴍᴇᴅɪᴄs for 28 minutes and by the time they arrived the twins were born. I had them in the bedroom because I couldn’t even make it to the toilet, I just bent down and grabbed them myself. Averly was born first and six minutes later so was Esmaè. I never even had a ᴘᴀʀᴀᴄᴇᴛᴀᴍᴏʟ. The month later Averly got Covid and we had to deal with all that. It has been a complete rollercoaster for us, we didn’t think she would sᴜʀᴠɪᴠᴇ to start with. The doctors had told us we were looking at hour by hour, they couldn’t even say she had days left. They transferred her to the Royal Children’s ʜᴏsᴘɪᴛᴀʟ and had a ɴᴇᴏɴᴀᴛᴀʟ sᴜʀɢᴇᴏɴ in the ᴀᴍʙᴜʟᴀɴᴄᴇ in case anything went really ᴡʀᴏɴɢ.
We drove behind them and I couldn’t help but think how I was about to have to plan a ғᴜɴᴇʀᴀʟ for her soon. I started to think about flowers and arrangements in my head, it was ʜᴏʀʀɪʙʟᴇ. Thankfully I didn’t have to do that because after being put in a ᴄᴏᴍᴀ and on a ᴠᴇɴᴛɪʟᴀᴛᴏʀ she started to get better. We couldn’t believe it. Averly had so many drips but slowly doctors started taking them off her and we realised she was getting much stronger. After two weeks she was even able to leave the Royal. When she came back to the Wishaw neonatal unit the staff were all sʜᴏᴄᴋᴇᴅ to see her. I don’t know how she did it, she was so tiny and just had the strength to pull through.”
But after spending 14 days at Royal Children’s Hospital, and then returning to the Wishaw neonatal unit, the twins were both discharged on November 12. Chloe added: “None of it really hit me till recently. I feel like a different person now compared to then. It has been a lot but the NHS have been so great. The doctors and nurses have all been so brilliant, everyone we came across has been so supportive and really helpful.”