Nina and Emma couldn't meet after being born in May last year due to Nina's prolonged hospital stays and surgeries.
The first time two identical twin sisters, aged 11 months, had interacted since their births in May last year, was on Monday, April 24. The meeting melted the hearts of many as the little angels met after a long struggle. The encounter had taken a long time to arrange, according to the twins' mother, Marija Sparano, who also called it "a very emotional moment for everyone." The identical twins, Emma and Nina, were delivered by cesarean section at Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital in New York City at 35 weeks gestation, per Good Morning America.
Identical twins Nina and Emma meet for the first time since birth. Sweet greeting. Nina will need more surgery but maybe by summertime, Nina can go home and the twins can do what twins do best. They are almost a year old. @Blythedale @ABC7NY pic.twitter.com/0fxUleepqz— Lucy Yang (@LucyYang7) April 24, 2023
The girls were monochorionic diamniotic (Mo-Di) twins, which means that although they shared a placenta, their sacs were different. Nina was also born with Pierre Robin syndrome, commonly known as the Pierre Robin sequence, an uncommon disorder, while Emma was born healthy. Pierre Robin syndrome usually causes a "smaller than normal lower jaw," according to the National Institutes of Health.
"She was basically trapped in her sac. It was folded over into what's called a pseudo sac and it kind of trapped her and clung to her real tight. When she was growing, she was growing with that covering her mouth and pushing her jaw down, causing a cleft palate," explained the twins' father, Daniel Sparano.
Nina received immediate care after delivery in the neonatal critical care unit before being sent to Blythedale Children's Hospital in Valhalla, New York, last September. Since that time, she has reportedly undergone several procedures and therapies, including a tracheostomy to aid in her breathing and a gastrostomy-jejunostomy, or G-J tube, to help her eat. She underwent a significant jaw operation in January to assist in moving her lower jaw forward gradually.
Baby girl meets identical twin sister for 1st timehttps://t.co/cFTnZMMLOO— Winsome Martin (@compro_tax) April 25, 2023
Their mother said the procedure was only partially successful and Nina would require another surgery and her hospital would continue. "We had other times where we were supposed to meet up and illness kept us away, or other complications kept us away. So, it was definitely a long time coming," Daniel said of the meeting of his duaghters. The Sparanos and Nina's care team were able to reconnect the girls this week outside of Blythedale after several delays and postponements. The 36-year-old father exclaimed how happy he was to finally see his daughters together.
"It was just so nice. I could go from one to the other and I did it so many times -- like, I was just kiss, kiss, kiss, kiss, kiss, kiss, kiss. It just felt so good to be able to do that. You have all these expectations of what you are going to experience as a parent of twins especially, and then it just doesn't really come to fruition. So it's nice, after all this time, to just be able to do that one simple thing,” he said.