A young British couple odds of 200 million to one to ᴄᴏɴᴄᴇɪᴠᴇ ɪᴅᴇɴᴛɪᴄᴀʟ ᴛʀɪᴘʟᴇᴛs. The three boys – Archie, Albie and Arthur, were born 12 weeks ᴇᴀʀʟʏ and parents Ellie Dudfield, 21, and Billy Revell, 20, were told there was just ᴀ 40 ᴘᴇʀ ᴄᴇɴᴛ ᴄʜᴀɴᴄᴇ ᴏғ sᴜʀᴠɪᴠᴀʟ. The ᴛʀɪᴘʟᴇᴛs were born ᴇᴀʀʟɪᴇʀ this year on June 30 at 28 weeks and two days following ᴀ ᴍɪsᴄᴀʀʀɪᴀɢᴇ in November 2020. They arrived at Kettering General ʜᴏsᴘɪᴛᴀʟ via ᴄ-sᴇᴄᴛɪᴏɴ – Archie weighed 2lb 6oz, Albie, 2lbs 2oz and Arthur, 2lbs 4oz. And if the ᴛʀɪᴘʟᴇᴛs weren’t ʀᴀʀᴇ ᴇɴᴏᴜɢʜ, Arthur was born in his ᴀᴍɴɪᴏᴛɪᴄ sᴀᴄ which ᴏᴄᴄᴜʀs in less than one in 80,000 births.
They were whisked straight off to the newborn ɪɴᴛᴇɴsɪᴠᴇ ᴄᴀʀᴇ ᴜɴɪᴛ which is when their ғɪɢʜᴛ ғᴏʀ sᴜʀᴠɪᴠᴀʟ truly began. Ellie said: “It was an emotional rollercoaster as they were so up and down. Archie and Albie had sᴇʀɪᴏᴜsʟʏ ʜɪɢʜ ʙʟᴏᴏᴅ ᴘʀᴇssᴜʀᴇ and needed ᴇxᴛʀᴀ ᴠᴇɴᴛɪʟᴀᴛɪᴏɴ so they were moved to University Coventry ʜᴏsᴘɪᴛᴀʟ after two days. It was so difficult having them in separate hospitals and Lola at home with our parents. They all had sᴇᴘsɪs ᴀɴᴅ ᴊᴀᴜɴᴅɪᴄᴇ ᴛᴏᴏ. Albie ᴄᴏɴᴛʀᴀᴄᴛᴇᴅ ᴍᴇɴɪɴɢɪᴛɪs ᴀʀᴏᴜɴᴅ ʜɪs ʙʀᴀɪɴ and needed an ᴇxᴛᴇɴsɪᴠᴇ ᴄᴏᴜʀsᴇ ᴏғ ᴀɴᴛɪʙɪᴏᴛɪᴄs. Archie had ᴀ ʙʟᴇᴇᴅ ᴏɴ ᴛʜᴇ ʟᴜɴɢ and we were told the outcome is likely to be ɴᴏᴛvery good. But thankfully the next day he was much better. Arthur was ᴅɪᴀɢɴᴏsᴇᴅ with a Grade four ʙʀᴀɪɴ ʙʟᴇᴇᴅ at two weeks old and ᴅᴏᴄᴛᴏʀs ᴄᴏᴜʟᴅɴ’ᴛ ᴅᴇᴛᴇʀᴍɪɴᴇ his quality of ʟɪғᴇ. The ᴡᴏʀsᴛ outcome for Arthur could be ᴄᴇʀᴇʙʀᴀʟ ᴘᴀʟsʏ, or it could be as ᴍɪɴᴏʀ ᴀs ɴᴇᴇᴅɪɴɢ ɢʟᴀssᴇs or having ᴄᴏɴᴄᴇɴᴛʀᴀᴛɪᴏɴ ɪssᴜᴇs. We will know more as he begins to reach the expected milestones. The ᴛʀɪᴘʟᴇᴛs had a ᴅɪғғɪᴄᴜʟᴛ sᴛᴀʀᴛ to ʟɪғᴇ but Billy, who is a multi-trade operative, stayed strong which helped me a lot. He was so positive. Lola hated it because we had never been apart before.”
After 12 weeks in hospital, the family returned home in September. Ellie, who works for the ⓃⒽⓈ administrative assistant, admits being a mum of four under two years old can be hard but she wouldn’t have it any other way.
Mom Ellie said :” We obviously don’t have the typical ʟɪғᴇ of other people our age. It is hard but we’ve always been family orientated so we have made it work. We began saving and sacrificing everything such as date nights, weekends away and buying new clothes when I found out I was ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴛ with Lola. Fortunately, we were both still living at home – rent-free so we were able to save as much as we can. We budgeted on everything, even food. It took us a year to save a 10 per cent deposit and we purchased a property using the ‘help to buy’ scheme. The ɴᴜʀsᴇs were impressed by how mature we are when we were in ⓃⒾⒸⓊ with the boys. Strangers always sᴛᴏᴘ us in the street to look at the boys and they always say ‘well done’ when they realise how young we are.”
The couple upgraded their five-seater car to a seven-seater one ahead of the arrival of the ᴛʀɪᴘʟᴇᴛs. They get through approximately 25 nappies per day and 18 bottles. Ellie said: “Luckily, we purchased a three-bedroom house in 2019 so we didn’t have to upsize. Having ᴛʀɪᴘʟᴇᴛs and a toddler is a lot of nappies and bottles. We get through a tub of formula a day. But I wouldn’t have it any other day as it is so rewarding seeing them grow up. Billy and I absolutely love it but we have no plans on having another baby!”