Happy birthday – four times over!
A family of quadruplet girls from South Yorkshire who stunned medics when they were born from a single embryo using IVF are now one year old – and are doing just fine.
Darcy, Alexis, Elisha and Caroline Clark were born just two minutes apart at Sheffield’s Jessop Wing maternity hospital, with some putting the odds of their birth at 70 million to one.
Mum Christine – who spent nearly a decade trying to conceive with husband Justin before turning to the Care Fertility clinic in Nether Edge for help – said the girls are already showing distinct personalities.
Christine, aged 37, who lives with Justin in Brinsworth, Rotherham, said: “Elisha is definitely the madam of the group – she’s always on the lookout for her three sisters, checking out strangers to make sure they’re OK and becomes visibly upset if one of the others disappears for a nappy change or a feed.
“Alexis was born last and she’s definitely the relaxed, laid-back one.
“Then there’s Darcy and Caroline, who are the mischievous twosome.”
And the mum said keeping a strict routine has proved vital so far.
She said: “When you’ve got four tiny babies all wanting to be fed, all needing their nappies changed and all wanting a cuddle, you have to manage the day.
“At the moment all the girls share the same room.
“At the start we were getting through 200 nappies a week – now it’s a slightly more manageable 100.”
Life has been made a little easier since the Clarks’ local supermarket organised a trolley specially-designed for quads, while Justin gave up his job as a lorry driver to support Christine with the babies.
He will remain a stay-at-home dad when Christine returns part-time to nursing next month.
She said: “It will be strange being apart from the girls. Sometimes it’s hard to remember what life was like before they came along.
“Whenever we go out, we get some nice comments, but every so often you’ll hear someone say ‘I don’t envy them’, and that really hurts.
“It does sometimes make me worried about leaving the house, but I try to remember all the lovely things they say.
“I guess the next big landmark will be when they take their first steps – and trust me, I’ve already researched reins suitable for quads!”