MADELINE Kaklikos, 24, is a social worker living in Melbourne, Australia with her husband Jon, 27, an electrician, and their twins Nate and Cole, 12 weeks old.
Here she reveals how she conceived her twins just days apart and gave birth in both her wombs.
Here she reveals
After scanning my pregnant belly, the obstetrician looked surprised.
“I can see another baby. “You’re having twins,” she said slowly. “But one is in your second womb.”
My husband Jon and I looked at each other in complete disbelief.
Almost two years earlier, in 2020, I was diagnosed with uterus didelphys (UD), an extremely rare congenital condition in which a woman is born with two uteri.
After three years of unsuccessfully trying to conceive, I underwent various tests and was shocked by the discovery – I had never heard of UD.
Having been diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) at the age of 18, I knew it would be difficult for me to conceive.
Concerned that UD would further affect my ability to have a child, the doctors advised us to try artificial insemination.
At our first egg retrieval in 2021, we got five from which the doctor was able to create two embryos.
They were placed in my more accessible uterus on my right side, but the embryos didn’t take up space.
We kept trying, but by the time I got my eighth round, I was afraid we’d never have a baby.
It was a dark time and I really struggled to find hope.
A few months later, the doctors managed to create eleven embryos, and on our tenth attempt, one was transferred to my left uterus, which was previously inaccessible. It worked this time.
In June 2022 our doctor called and informed me that I was pregnant.
I was with Jon, my parents and my brother and we all broke out in screams and tears ran down our faces as we hugged.
It wasn’t until our 10 week scan that we found out we had twins.
Doctors said there was a one in 50 million chance of having one child in one womb and another in the other.
They were also conceived at different times and in different ways – one through IVF and the other naturally.
The pregnancy was classified as a high risk pregnancy and our doctor said having a second baby could risk everything.
Since it was likely that I would lose both babies, we were advised to kill one of them.
Although we were terrified, we believed that both twins were meant to be, so we chose not to kill either of them.
My pregnancy went pretty smoothly. I was under constant surveillance so I felt very safe.
However, I was unable to give birth naturally due to the wall separating my uterus blocking the cervix and was told they didn’t know how the cesarean would go or how many incisions they would have to make to get our babies out.
On February 20th, at week 34, my waters ruptured and I underwent the planned caesarean section.
I was petrified but Jon was so calm and in the end the doctors were able to deliver our beautiful twins, who we named Nate and Cole, through an external incision.
When I rocked my babies for the first time, I felt like my heart would jump out of my chest.
We only had 10 minutes to hold them before they were given special care but it was everything I dreamed of.
It was hard being apart from them – I went to the special ward at 6am and left around 9pm.
Going home was heartbreaking and getting up every two hours to express breast milk was tough, but I knew they were being cared for by great nurses.
They were finally released after 17 days.
The birth of the newborn twins was hectic but they are now 12 weeks old and doing well.
We love life as parents to our miracle twins. When they are old enough to understand, we will tell them how special they are.”
By the way
About one in 25,000 women with UD will become pregnant with twins, giving birth to one in each womb.
This means that the chance of a woman giving birth to two babies in two separate wombs is about one in 50 million.