Merrill Twins Born 13 Weeks Early Celebrate 1st Birthday

Isabelle and Delana just celebrated their first birthday. A milestone their parents Jennifer and Ryan Podeweltz weren't sure they would ever get to see.

"Words can't really put it into perspective I don't think," Ryan Podeweltz told NewsChannel 7.

"I was a train wreck," Jennifer added.

Isabelle and Delana were born on December 28th, 2011. Thirteen weeks before their March 30th, 2012 due date.

"They had tried to stop the pregnancy, or stop the labor I should say, drugs wise and at one o'clock I just said I have this urge and all this pressure and my contractions were three minutes apart and they checked me and said you're dilated to three centimeters and they're coming. They're going to be here by three," Jennifer said re-living the morning the girls were born.

Over 3 months premature, Isabelle and Delana's lungs, hearts, and eyes were not fully mature at birth. Unable to breathe on their own, the twins spent the first three months of their lives in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, NICU, at Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital in Marshfield.

"Thirteen days they were on the vents and blood transfusions and IVs and feeding tubes," Jennifer recalled.

The twins made their long anticipated trip home on March 17th, 2012. More than two months after they were born. Now a year later, the girls are thriving.

"We just had a check-up yesterday and the doctors are pleased with where they are developmentally wise," Ryan said.

The Podeweltz say they owe all their thanks to the hospital staff.

"They're a vital part in getting through the process," Jennifer said.

By the time the girls are two or three years old, Jennifer says you won't be able to tell they were premature. As for talk of future siblings for Isabelle and Delana, the Podeweltz say two is enough.

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