Triplets thrive in March

PUBLISHED: 10:34 13 February 2007 | UPDATED: 22:34 28 May 2010

Natalie, Nicole and Adam Lytle

Natalie, Nicole and Adam Lytle

EXCLUSIVE by MAGGIE GIBSON TRIPLETS Natalie, Nicole and Adam are the centre of attention when they are out in the streets of March in their custom-made buggy. And their parents don t mind a bit because the smiling threesome are miracle babies who have bro

Rick and Sue with the triplets

EXCLUSIVE by MAGGIE GIBSON

TRIPLETS Natalie, Nicole and Adam are the centre of attention when they are out in the streets of March in their custom-made buggy.

And their parents don't mind a bit because the smiling threesome are miracle babies who have brought joy and happiness into their lives.

They were born after the couple underwent five years of fertility treatment at a cost of about £15,000 - £30,000 of which they had to find themselves.

"They are very expensive babies but worth it in the end," said proud dad Rick Lytle.

Now 18 months old, the triplets are quite literally finding their feet and are proving great fun to have around.

Rick met Sue Bottomly in America in 1999 and decided they would try for a baby in 2000. They had no idea the heartache they would have to endure before their dream came true.

But their message to other couples going through the same ordeal is: "Don't give up."

The couple first tried inter-uterine insemination, and when that proved unsuccessful they were advised to try IVF. It was then a doctor at Charlotte, North Carolina, discovered Sue was lacking in a protein which helps attach the foetus to the womb. After treatment for the deficiency they embarked on what they feared might be their final attempt.

That attempt proved successful but the pregnancy was very stressful. The couple moved to England to be near Sue's family because they knew they would need a lot of support.

Rick said: "I was so worried because it was such a high risk pregnancy. A lot of times you will lose one or two babies. We had some worries that one of the babies wasn't growing enough.

"It was a roller coaster of ups and downs and the stress involved was extremely intense. When we got past the first two months we were ecstatic. All the way to the end there was always a chance something would happen and we would not make it."

The triplets were born at Derby City General Hospital by Caesarean section and they were eight weeks premature.

Rick said: "The babies were taking such a toll on Sue's body her kidneys and liver were shutting down on her. I was there watching the birth and the whole thing was amazing."

The babies each weighed between three and four pounds and needed specialist care although they were all healthy.

Rick and Sue travelled to the hospital twice a day for a month. After that they were told the triplets were ready to go home. The couple were so nervous they looked after them in hospital for 24 hours to gain confidence.

Sue said: "It was unbelievable and just such a relief that it was finally over and we had been blessed with three healthy babies. It is hard to explain but it didn't sink in for several months.

"There were years of turmoil but for others going through it I would say you just have to stick with it through the ups and downs, the stress and anxiety. It is not going to be easy and there are lots of frustrations. It is like putting your lives on hold."

The couple moved to Blue Ridge Gardens, March, and really love the area. Sue is a microbiologist and Rick a financial recruiter.

After discovering the cost of nursery fees, the couple decided to bring in family friend Pauline Carlton to look after they triplets while they are at work.

The triplets are very healthy and have their own characters. Rick said: "They all have distinct characters and it is amazing how different they are. Adam is like a little bulldozer but they all get on really well. They are great kids.

"People ask us how we manage and I say it is all down to routine and you just have to look out for all the three-pack specials. They are going to have a great time at school together and this is a nice town to raise them in.

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