Syncrude employee Darrell Simms and his wife Annie welcomed Fort McMurray’s first set of quadruplets to the world on October 30.
The two boys and two girls: Heidi, Julie, Carter and Nate, were born premature but healthy at a hospital in Calgary after months of planning, preparing, doctor appointments, and specialist visits.
“First and foremost, Annie and I would like to say thank you,” posted Darrell, a Syncrude Maintenance Availability Leader, on the YMMQuadruplets Facebook page. “Thank you to the 911 team that responded so quickly, to the teams of nurses and doctors that have taken such great care of my wife and newly born children, to our family and friends for all they are doing to help us, and for the mountain of well wishes and support we have received.”
The quadruplets came as a surprise to the couple, who wanted to add a sibling to the family with their young daughter Payton.
The four babies also came as a surprise to health care professionals, as the chance of having quadruplets is about 1 in 800,000.
The babies were due to make their appearance in January 2019, but after Annie was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance at 30-weeks pregnant, they made their entrance into the world early.
“The whole night started at 7 p.m…at the hospital by 7:30 p.m., assessed by 10 p.m., and whisked off to the Operating Room shortly after. What a quick four hours,” said Darrell. “It would take me longer to play a round of golf!”
What followed their birth has been a whirlwind of recovery instructions for Annie and countless updates and protocol for the babies to tend to their needs and development. Progressing to remove breathing assist, IV’s for feeding, along with other developmental goals they are working towards.
It’s definitely not a straight line. There are setbacks, good days and bad, but we are working through it. It turns our world upside down some days. But we know in the long run they are getting the best care,
“We get cute moments when they open their eyes when we talk to them. It’s [these] moments that are what give us energy to continue and deepen the bond of love.”
Most recently, the four babies were stable enough to make the move from one Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) to another within Calgary. This was good news for the family as each new milestone feels like a mountain.
The community continues to offer support to Darrell, Annie and their family, and the YMMQuadruplets Facebook page was created to provide updates on their incredible journey.
“Thank you everyone for showing so much community support,” said Darrell.