An Adelaide, Australia, girl survived premature birth and significant health risks thanks to her healthy twin.
Lily Cobbing was born the size of a pen with skin so thin that her organs could be seen through it. Three months premature, her ears weren't fully formed at the time of her birth and she was at serious risk — saved only by the health of her twin, Summer.
"Her ears were like little dried apricots, her tummy was so see through you could see her organs and her eyes were still shut for a few more weeks," the twins' mother, Michelle Roberts-Cobbing, told the Daily Mail.
Cobbing said she received daily ultrasounds and was stunned to be informed that she would need to deliver her babies at 27 weeks due to Lily's health. On June 9, 2010, she delivered her girls via Caesarean section.
"They monitor it all so closely – if Lily had passed away in the womb, Summer would have had a stroke and [died] as well," Cobbing said. "There were tears. It was scary but you just do what you have to do for them."
Cobbing said that although both babies had to be put on ventilators and taken to the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit, one incident let her know that Lily would be okay.
"When they were pulling Lily out, she grabbed on to the doctor’s glove and it snapped back on his hand and he said that’s a good sign – she’s a fighter," she said.
Both babies were kept in intensive care for months, though Lily's stay was much longer than her sister's. Four weeks after her birth, things started to go downhill.
"We got a call when she was about four weeks old and the doctor told us to come in because it was the day she wasn’t going to make it," Cobbing told The Advertiser. "Her blood had flooded her lungs so she had chronic lung disease so her lungs were starting to fail."
Lily's parents placed Summer with Lilly in hopes that being close together like they were in the womb would improve the scary situation.
"Lily snuggled into Summer and Summer snuggled into Lily," Cobbing said. The plan worked — Lily survived, thanks to cutting edge technology and the health of her sister.
The little girl was finally able to come home after eight months in the hospital.
"She had problems with her heart and chronic lung disease and got a staph infection – she came home and was on oxygen until she was two-and-a-half years old," Cobbing told the Daily Mail.
Almost six years later, Cobbing said her daughters are doing well. The girls are close friends, though their personalities are very different.
"Summer is dramatic and Lily is very laid back and goes with the flow. They love all the little girlie things and Lily loves Star Wars and Chewbacca," she said.
Cobbing added that they won't know the lasting effects of Lily's premature birth until she's eight years old. Regardless, she said her daughter's survival was a miracle given the circumstances.
"We're just so proud of them," she said.