Expecting seven, they got eight
So you go into labor with what you think is seven babies. No small deal in itself! But before five minutes is over, you have eight children, to the surprise of all.
Monday in California, a woman did just that, giving birth to the second set of octuplets ever delivered alive in the United States. The six boys and two girls are reportedly doing well, despite arriving nine weeks premature. No names or pictures have been released. (At right, the staff of nurses who helped deliver the babies. AP photo)
Doctors thought the fun was over when the seventh baby arrived, but then someone spotted another hand. The mom reportedly said, "'Really, an eighth baby? How did we miss that baby?"
Here's the order of delivery:
- Baby A, a boy, weighing 2 pounds, 11 ounces, born at 10:43 a.m.
- Baby B, a girl, weighing 2 pounds, 12 ounces, born at 10:44 a.m.
- Baby C, a boy, weighing 3 pounds, 4 ounces, born at 10:45 a.m.
- Baby D, a girl, weighing 2 pounds, 8 ounces, born at 10:45 a.m.
- Baby E, a boy, weighing 1 pound, 8 ounces, born at 10:46 a.m.
- Baby F, a boy, weighing 2 pounds, 12 ounces, born at 10:47 a.m.
- Baby G, a boy, weighing 1 pound, 15 ounces, born 10:47 a.m.
- Baby H, a boy, weighing 2 pounds, 11 ounces, born at 10:48 a.m.
The nation's first set of octuplets was born in Houston in 1998. The smallest baby died a week after birth. But the survivors celebrated their 10th birthday in December.
Now, Slate has asked how many babies can fit in a woman's womb? Reporter Christopher Beam writes that the largest number in one womb was 15 in 1971. The largest ever delivered, Beam writes, "was in Australia in 1971, when a 29-year-old women gave birth to nonuplets."
Wowsa. I just know I couldn't handle such a blessing.
-- Amy Hollyfield