Pregnancy
Mom gives birth to 27-year-old baby that’s actually 2 years younger than her
It's difficult to wrap your head around.
Sasha Alonzo
11.15.21

For most of our lives, we think that pregnancy comes easily until it’s time to actually make a baby. Only then do most couples truly understand how small the window to get pregnant really is.

29-year-old Tina Gibson and her husband, Benjamin, 36, were giving up hopes that they could ever be parents. They tried to conceive a child for over five years, but eventually turned to the NEDC for help.

Benjamin has cystic fibrosis, which can cause infertility, and the couple, who have now been for 10 years, had previously fostered kids and were considering going down the adoption route.

Learning about a nonprofit

But everything changed when Tina’s parents told them about the nonprofit organization that could finally give them the baby they so badly wanted.

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Pexels

However, the idea of conceiving with a donor embryo took the couple a little while to warm to.

“We were like, ‘That sounds crazy. No, thank you, we’re not interested,’” Tina told The Post from her home in Knoxville, Tennessee. “Then we kept thinking about it and couldn’t get it out of our minds.”

An array of choices

After some consideration, Tina and Benjamin decided to visit the center, where they were presented with the profiles of around 300 people who had donated spare embryos following IVF treatment.

Youtube – NBC News
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Youtube – NBC News

“We weren’t picky,” said Tina, who works as an elementary school teacher. “We just wanted a baby.”

Youtube – NBC News
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Youtube – NBC News

Not your average embryo

It was only on the day of her transfer that Tina discovered that the embryo they were about to implant had been frozen for 24 years.

Youtube – NBC News
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Youtube – NBC News

“I asked the specialist, Dr. Jeffrey Keenan: ‘What does that mean?’ ” she recalled. “And he replied: ‘Well, it could be a world record.’ I trusted him.”

A wish come true

Tina gave birth to Emma in March 2017, and she quickly became the couple’s whole world. Although her embryo had been frozen for over two decades, she was a perfectly happy and healthy baby.

Youtube – NBC News
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Youtube – NBC News

After the success of their first child, the couple decided to use the last two embryos from their donor to give Emma a little brother or sister. The transfer was a success, and on October 26, Tina gave birth to the couple’s second daughter, Molly.

Youtube – NBC News
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Youtube – NBC News

Remarkably, the embryo that went on to become Molly had been frozen way back in October 1992 — only 18 months after her mommy, Tina, was born in April 1991.

“It’s hard to wrap your head around it,” Tina said. “But, as far as we’re concerned, Molly is our little miracle. “To us, it’s more unbelievable that we have two precious little children that we never thought we could have. We hold Molly — this itty bitty baby — and we feel blessed.”

Youtube – NBC News
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Youtube – NBC News

Parents to not one but two babies

Tina and Benjamin are now enjoying being parents to two little girls. Emma is apparently ‘obsessed’ with her little sister, and wants to pick her up and hold her throughout the day. And although the couple have now run out of their donated embryos, they still see an opportunity to expand their family in the future- through adoption.

Youtube – NBC News
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Youtube – NBC News

The power of science

Emma and Molly have proved to the world that scientific advances have the ability to perform miracles, and NEDC lab director Dr. Carol Sommerfelt couldn’t help expressing her joy over the birth of the two babies.

“It is very rewarding for me to see an embryo that was frozen years ago result in the birth of a lovely baby,” Dr. Sommerfelt said. “I feel honored to be part of the process.”

We’re happy this family got their happy ending. There’s no denying that their two little girls are truly remarkable.

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By Sasha Alonzo
hi@sbly.com
Sasha Alonzo is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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