They are Singapore’s most adorable Instagram superstars, and by that we mean 323,000 followers, and counting! Surely, you would have guessed by now that we are referring to Singapore’s MoMo twins, Leia and Lauren?
When we see Leia and Lauren today, it often escapes us that they were MoMo (Monoamniotic-Monochorionic) twins. We ask Amber and Peter, parents of these cutie pies, how the journey has been, from a high-risk pregnancy to super stardom.
When did you get to know that Leia and Lauren were MoMo twins? What did it mean really?
Mummy Amber Young says, “I was 8 weeks into my pregnancy when I found out that I was expecting twins, and 12 weeks pregnant when the gynaecologist confirmed that I was expecting MoMo twins. He was not able to detect the ‘membrane’ that was supposed to separate them.”
“He shared that MoMo twins are identical twins that develop in a single, shared placenta and amniotic sac in the mother’s womb. They share the placenta but have two separate umbilical cords. It was extremely rare and a high-risk pregnancy. The risk of cord entanglement increases as the pregnancy progresses. There was also a risk of TTTS (twin to twin transfusion syndrome).”
What were the risks and complications involved during pregnancy and delivery?
Amber recalls, “I was experiencing extreme bouts of nausea for the first 2 trimesters. When I was in my last trimester, I couldn’t even get out of bed. MoMo pregnancies account to only 1% of all twin pregnancies, and as you can expect, there are hardly any cases in Singapore that we could learn from or share experiences with.”
“It was a stressful journey when we knew we were faced with a growing risk. Information online was inconsistent and there were minimal case studies for us to consult. Not even our gynaecologist was confident to advise on when the twins should be delivered.”
“We had to balance the risk of the babies development if they were born too early versus the increasing risk of cord entanglement, with each passing day. We had to make that decision and it was nothing short of stressful.”
“Somehow we decided to seek a second opinion, where the doctor advised to have the babies delivered at 32+ weeks. We were blessed to have done so, for when Leia and Lauren were born, their cords were already a ball of knots. We would have lost them had we waited any longer.”
“Leia and Lauren were born weighing in at 1.5 kg and 1.6 kg respectively. They spent 2 weeks in ICU and another 2 weeks in the Special Care Nursery. We had to make daily trips to the hospital to perform kangaroo care.”
What was the inspiration behind starting their Instagram account?
“We wanted to document their growing up journey, being significant to us as they were born preemies.
Instagram’s simple interface makes it so much easier for us to share their pictures and experiences with family and friends who constantly want updates. On top of that, we are able to connect with a like-minded community to learn and share experiences, being first-time parents.”
No one would have imagined that the Momo twins would become such huge celebrities on Instagram- 323,000 followers! Even International publications have covered their story. Does their stardom ever ‘worry’ you? Do you feel it might affect them as they get older and start school?
“Not at all! Stardom or not, it doesn’t affect the way we raise our children. Like any normal parent, we believe in cultivating values of integrity, honesty and responsibility by being good examples ourselves.”
Safety and privacy concerns
Is safety and privacy ever a concern?
“We do take certain measures. Most of our posts are ‘latergrams’ and we typically avoid doing live location postings on social media for the security of our children. The media attention has been respectful so far, but if there ever should be any negativity, we will not hesitate to remove or block anyone from our social channels.”
Do you get mobbed or instantly recognised when you go out in Singapore?
“Our girls get recognised on the streets occasionally and even during our holidays overseas! It has always been very respectful with most people politely asking for pictures.
Leia and Lauren are unfazed by the camera! They will usually do their own thing which makes it easy and enjoyable for us to capture their lovely moments.”
Life as parents of twins
Does it get too tiring at times, being parents to twins, celebrity ones at that?
“Double the babies isn’t really double the work! We feed and put the kids to bed at the same time, so as long as a routine is set in place, it is surprisingly manageable.
They are active toddlers now and it does get tiring and I barely have any ‘me’ time, but you know, all of these just seem so insignificant when we are greeted with their heartwarming hugs and smiles.”
How different or similar are Leia and Lauren?
“They have opposite personalities but share similar interests – Leia is a reserved and observant child whereas Lauren is the jovial and cheeky one. Both of them love music and enjoy a little dance or two. They prefer the same books and toys.”
“And although they fight a lot over toys these days, deep down inside they love and watch out for each other. I would catch them sharing a biscuit without me telling them to. They would be elated to see each other after being apart for the day. Very interesting dynamics between these two!”
Have they ever been separated? How did they take to it?
“Yes, and they reacted normally when separated. We knew they must have each other when they got so happy to see each other again!”
Advice to mums
Any advice to our mums regarding difficult pregnancies, and raising twins?
Says Amber, “To avoid excessive googling while you are pregnant. There are so many horror stories online that would give you unnecessary stress, and it wouldn’t even help a thing.”
“Being a twin parent, it is important to recognise that each of the twins are unique in their own way. Embrace their differences and spend time bonding with them individually. You will discover so much more!”
Thank you, Amber and Peter, for sharing your story with us. We look forward to seeing more cute antics of these adorable angels; here’s wishing this family peace and happiness!
*This article is from our archives.
Also READ: Singapore babies you should follow on Instagram for your daily dose of cute!
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