These babies are one in 15 million — or rather, four in 15 million.
The identical quadruplet girls, conceived the old-fashioned way without use of fertility drugs or reproductive technology, are celebrating their one-month birthday, and their parents are preparing to bring them home from the hospital.
Bethani and Tim Webb of Hythe, Alberta, were totally surprised when a routine ultrasound revealed four babies back in December.
Bethani Webb was 33 weeks along when Abigail, McKayla, Grace and Emily made their grand entrance into the world on May 6 via C-section at Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton. There were no health issues except jaundice, which has already cleared up, she said.
“They’re all doing really well,” Bethani Webb, 22, told TODAY Parents. “They’re all good.”
Abigail is the oldest of the quadruplets by just a minute or two, while McKayla is the youngest. Abigail was also the smallest at birth, weighing 3 pounds, while Emily was the biggest, at 4 pounds 1 ounce.
“At this point, I’m not able to tell them apart,” Bethani said. “We’re going to paint their toenails and assign them each a color.”
The girls already have their own distinct personalities. Abigail is feisty, vocal and will let you know if she’s upset. Emily is very active. Grace “likes to give people looks,” her mom said, while McKayla is calm, but also very vocal.
After so many months squeezed tight together in mom’s belly, they still love each other’s company.
“They definitely miss each other when they’re apart from their sisters,” Bethani said.
“Right now, they’re all in one crib, which is nice. Before, they were in their incubators, they were all separate and they definitely had some separation anxiety.”
The Webbs had no idea just how much bigger their family would get when they learned Bethani was pregnant last fall, three months after their wedding. They were startled when an ultrasound technician counted four babies during a routine check in December. Tim almost fainted, while Bethani was convinced there had to be a mistake.
The chance of having quadruplets without fertility drugs is one in 729,000, Dr. James Bofill, a professor of maternal-fetal medicine at the University of Mississippi, told TODAY when he treated a Mississippi woman who gave birth to quadruplets in 2014.
But the odds of having identical quadruplets are about one in 15 million pregnancies, according to RaisingMultiples.org.
The Webbs, who are first-time parents, have no history of multiples in their families.
“It’s a little overwhelming knowing that I’m taking care of four little babies,” Bethani said. “But it’ll be good. Once they get home and I get into a routine, I’m sure it won’t be too bad.”
The family has received lots of donations, including car seats, diapers, blankets and clothes, while a community fundraiser helped them to buy a minivan.
To help the couple with finances, friends have also started a GoFundMe page.