Two twin babies in England reunited after a deadly heart condition forced both to spend much of their lives apart.
Roman and Hunter Williams only managed to hold hands briefly when they were born Jan. 28, 2015 before Roman developed heart problems, the Daily Mail reports.
Since then, the two were forced into a separation that lasted 14 months while doctors performed operations on Roman. At one poin,t experts told his parents he had a 50 percent chance of survival and required a heart transplant.
The child suffered from a rare heart condition known as pulmonary atresia in which the blood flow from his heart to his lungs was blocked, the U.S. National Library of Medicine explains. Symptoms ranging from bluish colored skin to an inability to breathe usually show up during the first few hours or days of a child’s life.
Fortunately, however, the baby did receive a new heart from an older child six months later.
“It was the longest day of our lives waiting to find out if he was going to get the heart that had become available,” said their father, Craig Williams.
Although Roman survived, he will require regular check-ups until his body is large enough to support his new heart.
Yet for now, his family is just focused on getting their lives back together and allowing the boys to develop a bond.
"It is really nice to have him home. Hunter is so excited and keeps cuddling him and kissing him. He just wants to play with him all the time,” said Pickering.
It’s not all cuddles and kisses, however. Pickering says the usual sibling rivalry is also beginning to blossom.
“I think Hunter could tell that his brother was [doing poorly in the] hospital but he must know he's getting better because he isn't as gentle with him as he used to be. I think some sibling rivalry might start now as Hunter was so used to having us to himself and having all the attention, but it's just great to have them both home,” Pickering said.
Indeed, only a couple of hours after Roman arrived home, Hunter may have tried to steal his brother’s spotlight by taking his first steps.
“Hunter just stood up and starting walking. We couldn't believe it,“ said Pickering. “It was probably just to take the attention away from Roman.”