Meet the Family: The Triplets



“I felt helpless, like I didn’t know what to do. Having donor human milk has been such a huge relief.” — Sarah, the Triplets’ Mother

For many years, Sarah and her husband, Sawyer, dreamed of having kids. After multiple miscarriages and an ectopic pregnancy, the couple were overjoyed to learn they had successfully conceived triplets through IVF. But when Sarah’s water broke at just 33 weeks, they soon found their family facing a difficult journey.

As Sarah was rushed to the hospital for an emergency C-section, she was losing blood quickly. By the time she delivered babies Ethan, Sam, and Penelope, she had lost almost half the volume of her blood. While she recovered from delivery and patiently waited for her milk to come in, the triplets were admitted to the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). There, the trio received the life-saving donor human milk they so desperately needed.

Despite being born at just above three pounds, Sam only spent the first few weeks of life in the NICU, alongside sister Penelope. For the third triplet, Ethan, life in the NICU wasn’t so brief. Early on, he was diagnosed with respiratory distress syndrome, a common condition for premature babies. Since his lungs were not fully developed, he could not breathe on his own and he had to be put on a ventilator to keep him alive.

“From the beginning, you’re always thinking about bringing home three babies, but watching him struggle so much, you start wondering if he is actually going to make it home.”

After over 50 days of fighting, Ethan was able to go home. Now, three months after leaving the NICU, Ethan still requires support from an oxygen tank (which Sarah lovingly likens to having a fourth baby to carry around).

Once their family was back home, Sarah found herself struggling to supply enough milk to meet the needs of all three babies. She found her stash of frozen breastmilk dwindling when two of her little ones developed dairy and soy sensitivities, meaning Sarah needed to switch to a specialized diet. The triplets weren’t getting the calories they needed to gain weight appropriately. As Sarah says: “There’s nothing worse than having a hungry baby who can’t eat.”

In their time of need, financial donors were there when it counted – making it possible for Rocky Mountain Children’s Health Foundation to provide precious donor human milk to babies like Ethan, Sam, and Penelope through Mothers’ Milk Bank. Thanks to your support, Sarah had the liquid gold she needed to feed her babies.

“Mothers’ Milk Bank has taken a huge weight off my shoulders, and just seeing my babies eat well makes me choke up.”

Sarah’s family is not alone. Courageous families across the country are navigating the incredible pressures of premature or critically ill newborns.

Help us support families like Sarah’s by giving a gift in the link below. Your contribution will help us do everything possible to keep our most vulnerable populations healthy and thriving. Together, we can be there for these courageous families when it really counts.