PREMATURE twins born the size of a Fanta bottle have celebrated their first Christmas-after their mum was worried they would never come home.
Elizabeth and Etta Kearns-Turner were born nine weeks early on August 25 with Elizabeth weighing just 2lbs 11oz and Etta a tiny 2lbs 10oz each after mum Suzy Kearns-Turner, 32, went into premature labour.
The tiny pair's lungs hadn't developed properly at birth and they were kept in were kept in Burnley General Hospital's neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) for six gruelling weeks, each spending more than 1,000 hours in intensive care, before finally being officially discharged from all treatment in early December.
Now the twins will celebrate their first Christmas with mum, dad Mick, 39, and siblings Eric, five, and Edie, four, at home in Blackburn, Lancs-and will turn exactly four months old on the big day.
Mum-of-four Suzy, who runs a swimming school, said: "When the twins were born, they were so tiny they could fit into our hands.
"It was terrifying not being able to bring them home and at one point I thought I was going to lose Etta.
"I remember sitting with them one day, drinking a bottle of Fanta-I realised that they were the size of my bottle.
"But the twins were home three weeks before their due date which shows just how strong they are." We're so glad that they're able to be home this Christmas and the one thing I wanted to do was put on a big celebration with friends and family. "
NINE WEEKS PREMATURE
Suzy was just 31 weeks pregnant when she started having contractions and got husband Mick to take her to hospital.
The hospital tried to stop the premature labour but Elizabeth's heart rate had dropped so doctors knew they had to act fast to help both babies and the girls were born via emergency c-section.
Elizabeth was born first, and Etta followed two minutes later but the twins were whisked off to NICU before Suzy could hold them.
Suzy said: "When they told me I needed a c-section I was terrified and I asked my midwife whether my babies were going to die – it's all I could think about. I just had to watch the nurses working on them from my bed . As a mum, it's not what you want to see at all. "
Both Suzy and Mick spent as long as they could in the unit with the twins, with Suzy often waiting by their bedsides for 14 hours a day.
Elizabeth was allowed home first on October 6, after spending 1,012 hours in NICU.
Shortly after, on October 8, Etta was given the all clear and joined her sister after a long 1,058 hours in the unit.
Since arriving home, the twins have tripled their birth weight, with Elizabeth now weighing 7lbs 13oz and Etta 7lbs 5oz.
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The pair will be christened on December 23, with Suzy and Mick planning a big party afterwards for friends and family to celebrate. Suzy said: "I love Christmas and turn into a big kid when it comes around, it's a special time to spend with family.
"It will be extra special this time because it's the twins' first Christmas.
"They're our little miracles and the best presents ever-we couldn't ask for anything more."
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