(TMU) – When Jenny Marr of Dallas, Texas, learned that she was pregnant, she was understandably feeling nervous. After all, pregnancy is a very emotional experience – especially if it’s a first child.
But when Jenny and her husband Chris, both 35, went to her first ultrasound exam to catch a first glimpse of their child, they were on pins and needles as their doctor responded with a quizzical, almost confused look on her face. Jenny asked the doctor what was wrong.
Marr recounted the scene to Today:
“I was like, ‘Oh no, there’s no heartbeat.’ And, she’s like, ‘No, there is a heartbeat,’ … She goes, ‘Y’all, there’s three babies in there.’ And we were just absolutely floored.”
One week later on Nov. 19, 2019, they followed up with a visit to a maternal-fetal medicine specialist, who also gave them a similar quizzical glance. Chris explained:
“The tech — who was doing the initial (scan) — she gave me a funny look. We were like, ‘Oh what’s going on now?’ We got worried again,’ … She was really cute. She said, ‘I’m not supposed to say this, but y’all got four babies.’”
Rather than triples, the couple was actually going to have a set of identical quadruplets.
What followed was a period of shock for the couple, both of whom had been raised as only children. Neither of their families had a history of multiple births either, nor was Jenny taking any fertility treatments.
The fact that this was all unfolding during the coronavirus pandemic didn’t make the situation any easier.
Chris explained that the feeling he had was dizzying, and he joked that maybe it was a bad idea to return to the clinic or else it might be five babies the next time. However, all of the fetuses were in healthy shape – but that still didn’t make the feeling of expecting quadruplets any easier.
Chris told the Washington Post:
“It sounds horrible to say, but I don’t know if it was necessarily tears of joy. We were completely overwhelmed and, frankly, terrified.”
According to experts, a natural pregnancy of quadruplets is extremely rare and happens only once in every 11 million births. There are only 72 recorded cases of identical quadruplets in the world – and most are girls.
The Marrs were also taken aback after learning that the quadruplets shared the same placenta – meaning that if the four didn’t share their nourishment more or less equally, it could endanger one or more of the children.
However, the fears turned out to be unfounded. Jenny went into labor on March 15, just one day before Dallas County announced its own stay-at-home order and physical distancing measures.
The quadruplets – Hudson, Harrison, Henry and Hardy – were born at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, and are all doing well now. The smallest baby, Hudson, weighed in at 1 pound, 15 ounces, but he had had no need for oxygen.
The four stayed at the neonatal intensive care unit for several weeks to ensure that they remained healthy. The family of six were able to finally return home last week. Jenny told CBS DFW:
“It’s a different world we live in now, and it’s really interesting to be going through all of this. We literally gave birth on the day the pandemic broke out.”
And while the baby boys are steadily developing their own unique personalities, the parents have still given them little ankle bracelets so they can each be identified.
Chris admits that they “confuse them from time to time,” but he added:
“They each have little bitty characteristics … When we sit down and look at them we can figure out who they are but if you just look at them from a distance, they all look the same. Thank God, Hudson’s a little smaller than everybody else and quieter.”
Jenny hopes that her experience bringing the little miracles into the world can bring other expecting parents help despite the trying times of the current health emergency. She said:
“We just hope that this little story and our boys bring as much joy to everybody as they bring to us.”