It’s a womb double whammy!
California couple Odalis and Antonio Martinez took the edict “be fruitful and multiply” to new levels when they conceived their youngest daughter just five days after conceiving another daughter.
“I got pregnant while I was already pregnant,” the 25-year-old full-time mother of two from San Pablo, California, told Kennedy News. “I just say that they’re twins, but after reading a lot of articles I know that they’re technically not twins. But it’s just confusing for people so I just tell them like ‘Yeah, they’re twins.’ ”
Her 6-month-old infants, Lilo and Imelda Martinez-Atoyac, were born minutes apart on Aug. 10, 2021. The precious pair is a product of an extremely rare phenomenon known as superfetation — a double pregnancy that occurs when a fetus forms while another fetus is already present in the uterus.
In the remarkable case of superfetation, an occurrence that’s been documented less than 10 times throughout human history, a second egg is fertilized by a second sperm and implanted a few days or weeks after the initial pregnancy has commenced.
And for newlyweds Odalis and Antonio, 31, who had previously suffered a miscarriage in July 2020, this maternity “miracle” was just what the doctor ordered.
“I was extremely happy that the pregnancy test was positive and we were on our pregnancy journey again,” Odalis said. “I felt really lucky. I know a lot of people that have been trying to conceive and just haven’t been able to. So that was also a fear of mine but thankfully that wasn’t our case and I fell pregnant really quickly.”
Her overjoyed disposition notwithstanding, the expecting mom was also plagued by the looming terror of another gestational disappointment.
“I felt really really happy and also scared because of the miscarriage,” she explained. “It was pretty terrifying throughout my whole pregnancy not knowing if that was going to be the outcome again. Hoping for the best, but knowing there’s always a possibility that things might not go as planned.”
And while she and Antonio didn’t plan on conceiving two babies at the same time, Odalis says her hubby practically joked their tiny twosome into existence.
“The month that we conceived — and before we even knew that I was pregnant with two babies — Antonio and I had gone to the park to work out,” the mama marvel recalled. “He was shooting basketballs and said, ‘OK, if I shoot this basket and I make it, you have twins. Just kidding.’”
He ended up making the shot.
“I was like, ‘Haha, very funny,’” Odalis said.
Shortly thereafter, Odalis received the shock of her life during her first ultrasound visit — a session she nervously attended alone while Antonio waited outside due to COVID restrictions inside health care facilities.
“I was just so scared that they were going to tell me ‘Oh, there’s no heartbeat,’” said Odalis. “So I was so anxious the whole time I was texting Antonio like ‘I’m so scared.’”
But the physician ultimately blessed her with big-bellied news.
“The doctor comes in and I’m trying to mentally prepare myself for anything,” Odalis said. “And when she found the first baby and the heartbeat I was crying with so much happiness.”
Then, the other womb boom dropped.
“And then she started going back and forth and I was wondering why — my mind just went to the worst-case scenario because of the traumatic experience that we had,” the concerned mom remembered. “That’s when she told me that she had found another baby that also had a heartbeat.”
The doctor was even able to pinpoint the time of the second little one’s conception.
“When you go to the first ultrasound they check everything and around the day that you actually conceived the baby,” said Odalis. “That’s when she told me that they were conceived five days apart, which I didn’t even know could happen.”
Despite the flabbergasting shock, the new mommy-to-be was absolutely tickled pink.
“I was just crying with happiness,” she said. “I felt like the first baby that we had lost was in the room with me and saying it was going to be OK.”
The pregnancy and births had few complications.
Odails — whose due date was set two days after one baby would have been 40 weeks and two days before the other one would have been 40 weeks — first welcomed Lilo at 6 pounds, 12 ounces, then Imelda at 7 pounds, 3 ounces on Aug. 10.
“It was a really beautiful moment to finally be able to hold them in my arms,” Odalis said. “When I held them and knew that they were OK, I can’t even explain the feeling.”
And now, even though the girls aren’t twins, the mom of multiples admitted that she and Antonio often confuse their lookalike little ladies for one another.
“Sometimes me and my husband, well more my husband, will get them mixed up with each other,” Odalis confessed. “Antonio will have a baby for an hour and be like ‘Oh Lilo’ this and that and I’m like ‘You have Imelda’ and he will be like ‘What?’ and I’m just there laughing because he was like, ‘Oh my God for a whole hour I thought I had Lilo.’”
She, however, is a little better at infant identifying.
“I usually don’t get them mixed up anymore, just because I’m with them 24/7 so I feel like I can tell them apart pretty easily, but a lot of people get them mixed up.”
Regardless of the double baby bombshell and the who’s who chaos that ensued, Odalis says her unexpected cooing combo was the “best surprise ever” — especially after a miscarriage.
“Because of our first experience, it made everything during this pregnancy feel so much more special and magical,” said Odalis. “I love my family and my husband, but I had just never experienced a love and happiness like that.”