Welwyn Garden City mother reveals her story after seriously ill twins pull through

PUBLISHED: 13:44 26 January 2017 | UPDATED: 09:19 30 January 2017

Kerrie and Peter Charles with Hollie, James and Alex.

Kerrie and Peter Charles with Hollie, James and Alex.


Welwyn Garden City twins who were born seriously ill at 29-weeks-old are celebrating their first birthday today, a birthday their parents worried might never come.

James and Alex when born. James and Alex when born.

James and Alex Charles, of Welwyn Garden City, were born premature on January 26, 2016, after their mum Kerrie went into spontaneous labour.

Kerrie said: “I was in and out of hospital throughout the pregnancy, it was one thing after another.

“From being told that they could not see one of our babies’ stomachs in a scan, to being told they may have a life-threatening condition.”

Things took a turn for the worse when Kerrie was admitted to Lister Hospital due to having a bleed.

Sister Hollie while staying at home provided by The Sick Children's Trust. Sister Hollie while staying at home provided by The Sick Children's Trust.

After days of labour, the boys were delivered by caesarean.

Both James and Alex were born seriously ill. But the following day, James was really struggling and producing a green bile.

Kerrie said: “I remember the doctor coming up to my bedside the following afternoon looking very tearful. She said they had to transfer him to another hospital as they couldn’t help him anymore.”

James was taken to The Rosie, a specialist hospital in Cambridge.

Due to just having a caesarean, Kerrie couldn’t travel and the family had to separate.

Kerrie remained at Lister with Alex while James and their father Pete were over 30 miles away.

Kerrie said: “At the time it was like a nightmare or a horrendous dream that I couldn’t wake up from. I was in overdrive, feeling like I had to be strong for everyone.”

Things were made easier for the family when Pete was given a set of keys to free accommodation close to the hospital, at Chestnut House, which is supported by The Sick Children’s Trust.

Kerrie joined her husband Pete and their daughter Hollie in Cambridge and the family travelled to Lister everyday to visit Alex, who had to stay in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at the Lister.

Nearly two weeks later, James became stable enough to re-join his brother at Lister Hospital and finally seven weeks after the boys were born, they were allowed home.

Only a few weeks later Alex caught a cold and was found by his mother lifeless and freezing one morning.

Kerrie said: “Alex was rushed to Lister Hospital and despite their best efforts, they couldn’t stabilise him so he was transferred to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge. It was like a recurring nightmare.”

Pete once again went to Cambridge but this time with Alex, who was put into an induced coma, while Kerrie stayed at Lister Hospital with James, who was being observed.

Kerrie added: “James began to get ill very quickly and one night the doctors were unable to stabilise him.

“It was the scariest night of our lives. I honestly thought he was going to die.

“But we’re a year on now and the twins are doing really well.

“They have just celebrated their first Christmas and their birthday is around the corner.

“We can’t wait to see how else they’ll amaze us.”

Last year Kerrie decided to get involved with The Sick Children’s Trust’s Pyjama Party and raised £1,878 for the charity that helped her family during the horrendous time.

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