This pair of identical twins were born in separate years, despite entering the world just 25 minutes apart.
Proud dad Dan Appleton, 26, today revealed his girls’ premature birth meant the sisters were born either side of midnight on New Year’s Eve in a fluke which medics said had never happened before in Britain.
Little Aliya Grace was born at 11:40pm on December 31, with her sister Lyarna Rose following at 12:03am on January 1 – the first baby born in 2018 at Princess Anne Hospital in Southampton, Hampshire.
Mr Appleton’s partner Michelle Sandy, 32, had gone into hospital with contractions on Thursday December 28, and stayed there until the twins were induced on Sunday afternoon.
After Aliya’s birth, doctors and midwives paused briefly to wish each other a happy new year, before telling Michelle to ‘start pushing because the next one is coming’.
Mr Appleton, a maintenance worker, said: “On the day we had joked about which year they would be born in.
“The midwives were joking about it, because it got to 6:30pm and Michelle wasn’t anywhere near to giving birth.
“It got later, and we were thinking, ‘wow, this is really going to be pushing it to give birth in 2017’.
“Then Michelle started pushing at about 11:30pm, and within 10 minutes little Aliya was born.”
“It got to about a minute to midnight, and the doctors and midwives were waiting for Lyarna,” Mr Appleton continued.
“At about one minute past, everyone said happy new year, and then doctors said ‘right, now you need to start pushing because the next one is coming’.
“After Lyarna was born it was almost as if no one knew how to react – they didn’t know whether to congratulate us for having healthy babies or for having one for each year.
“Once the team made sure both were healthy, a doctor actually Googled it, and apparently it’s only ever happened before in the US.”
The family currently plan to celebrate the twins’ birthdays on separate days.
Mr Appleton added: “I think for the first few years we will keep it separate and then let them choose when they get older.
“Officially, their birthdays are different and it might be nice to celebrate as separate days.
“Most people are awake at midnight on New Year’s Eve, so we could just pass the celebrations over.”
The girls were born seven weeks early, each weighing just 4lbs 8oz, but are both healthy.
They are currently being kept in hospital for a few days under UV light before going home.
Dan and cleaner Michelle now have four daughters and one son.
Ruby, who is soon to turn nine, and eight year old Amelia plus four-year-old Tyler are said to be ‘over the moon’ about their new sisters.
After Michelle fell pregnant, the couple, from Totton, near Southampton, found out the sex of their twins at early scans and then named Aliya after Michelle’s best friend who died last year.
Mr Appleton said: “We chose Lyarna because it’s a name we’ve both liked for a while. We gave them middle names of Grace and Rose, and then it turned out those are the names of my great auntie who I never met.
“It’s been full of coincidences.”
Source: The Mirror