Jake Easton Ladner gets attention from parents Haylee and Shawn Ladner.
The only boy and two of his sisters have made their way home, while the remaining two girls continue their care at the Jackson hospital.
A rare set of quintuplet babies – four girls and one boy – were born in Mississippi on February 16th to Haylee and Shawn Ladner.
Jake, the first of five, was sent home from the NICU at the end of April. He was followed in the beginning of May by his sisters, Adalyn and Magnolia Mae. Everleigh and Malley Kate are still being cared for at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC).
“We are beyond ready for all the babies to come home. It will just be the greatest day ever when they can be home,” said their mother, Haylee.
She says the family continues to look forward to the last two girls coming home soon.
According to Mom and Dad, the youngters all have very distinct personalities.
“Adalyn likes to sleep, but if she’s upset, you’ll know it,” Haylee said. “Everleigh likes to eat. Jake is the calmest as long as he’s fed and gets his sleep. Malley Kate, or MK, is the smallest, but she’s also feisty. Magnolia Mae is dainty and calm. I’m constantly amazed with how strong they are and how beautiful they are, and I’ll always be grateful for that.”
The babies were born in the Wiser Hospital for Women and Infants at UMMC by caesarean section. They are receiving care at the Kathy and Joe Sanderson Tower at Children’s of Mississippi, according to a press release by UMMC.
The five siblings were born at 28 weeks and one day. Their size at birth ranged from over 2 pounds to as small as 1 pound 11 ounces. At two months old, they all weigh more than five pounds.
At the 28 week mark, Haylee was showing signs of impending labor.
“We were thinking we could make it to about 29 or 30 weeks, but the day before delivery, she had pain in her stomach. Dr. Morris came in and said, ‘We’re having those babies tomorrow at 9 o’clock in the morning.’ It was pretty much a sleepless night for me that night,” said Shawn, Haylee’s husband and the children’s father.
He went on to add that his wife was a “trouper,” as he tried not to show his panic in the situation.
Dr. Rachael Morris, Haylee’s obstetrician, admitted her to the hospital for monitoring in January. Dr. Morris, who serves as an associate professor of maternal fetal medicine, provided prenatal care for Haylee and delivered the babies.
“We spent a lot of time in the hospital patiently waiting for them to be born. We had ultrasounds every day to check on them and their development,” Haylee said.
Despite their early arrival, Teresa Moncrief, a registered nurse on the babies’ care team says they are doing well.
“You couldn’t hope for a better outcome,” said Moncrief. “They’re surpassing everyone’s expectations as far as development.”
The Ladners sought out medical help to conceive, and were successful through intrauterine insemination or IUI. In their case, one of the two fertilized eggs divided four ways.
“Reports of spontaneous quintuplets vary but are about 1 in 60 million,” Dr. Morris said. “There are very few reports of identical quadruplets in the literature to date. Reported incidence is 1 in 10 to 15 million pregnancies. There is only one other report of this combination in the literature from 2018.”
While life in the NICU is not easy, Haley and Shawn say they are making it work. They also complimented the nursing staff who has provided support throughout their journey.
“We have the best support system here, so even though it’s really hard at times, we’re able to get through it,” said Haley.
The Ladners say the girls’ nursery is all ready for them with a light pink Disney princess theme, while Jake’s room is a “gone fishing” theme, according to their maternal grandmother Sharon Bullock.