Arley and Ayden, twin brothers born at just 25 weeks, have experienced a remarkable journey of survival. Their mother, Toni Lacey, was overjoyed to discover she was pregnant with twins after a previous miscarriage. However, their story took an unexpected turn when Toni was diagnosed with uterine dehiscence during a routine scan.
Uterine dehiscence, a rare and life-threatening complication, posed a significant risk to both the twins and their mother. Toni was admitted to the hospital, where she remained for three weeks until Arley and Ayden were born, weighing a mere 1.5 lbs and 1.6 lbs respectively.
“It was a truly terrifying and agonizing experience. The uncertainty of their survival haunted me, considering how premature they were,” shared Toni. “Being separated from my other children was heartbreaking. They expected me to return from a routine scan, but I never came home.”
The twins faced numerous challenges from the moment of their birth. Clothes didn’t fit them until they reached three months of age, and they had to wear outfits designed for infants weighing 3-4 lbs. Additionally, Arley was diagnosed with necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), a serious bowel condition requiring surgery when he was just four days old. Meanwhile, Ayden endured a grade four brain bleed, leaving Toni and Ryan, the boys’ father, uncertain about the potential long-term effects.
Despite the bleak prognosis and the possibility of losing their boys, Toni recently celebrated a significant milestone: Arley and Ayden’s 100th day of life. While they continue to receive medical care and treatment for other health issues, Toni eagerly awaits the day when they can finally come home, told The Mirror.
“The doctors were upfront about the challenges and the possibility of their survival. They emphasized the long and difficult journey ahead,” shared Toni. “Their tiny size was astonishing—so fragile that they needed to be kept warm in plastic bags after birth. They were smaller than my hand, and their entire body could be covered by it. One of their hands could barely wrap around their father’s finger. They weighed less than a bag of sugar and were about the length of a banana.”
Currently, Arley and Ayden remain in the hospital, undergoing treatment and care for their ongoing health concerns. Arley awaits the reversal of his stoma, while Ayden continues to struggle with breathing, relying on tube feeds, and being unable to drink from a bottle. Although Toni has prepared everything at home for their arrival, it feels strange to return without them.
“I long for the day when I can finally bring them home, a day I hope will come in the next couple of months,” expressed Toni. “They have already endured so much, and I eagerly anticipate their continued progress and a brighter future together.”