It’s been one week since 13-month-old twins Jadon and Anias were separated in a life-changing 27-hour surgery.
And in what can only be described as “one of the most profound moments" of her life, mum Nicole McDonald was finally able to hold one of her boys on their very own.
“For over 13 months, I’ve dreamed of this moment,” the brave mother wrote on Facebook. “I looked down at Jadon’s angelic face and saw him in a way I’d never seen him before.
“He whimpered for almost the whole two hours I held him because he had just been extubated, had the area under his scalp washed out and had been weaned from the good pain meds.
“But instead of wrapping my body around him in his bed, I wrapped my arms around him and rocked. One of the most profound moments of my life.”
Although Nicole’s husband, Christian McDonald, was unable to hold his son for the first time due to limited time, he was thrilled that his wife was able to experience the moment she had been waiting for since day one.
"She's been longing to hold him since the day the twins were born," he told CNN. "That's a very special moment for a mother to share."
The parents, who also share three-year-old son Aza, are yet to experience the same touching moment with their other son Anias, who is said to be progressing more slowly than his brother in his own recovery.
“I know things got pretty hard... and that you've been through more than I will ever experience in a lifetime... but I promise that it's going to be OK,” the mum wrote to her son on Facebook, while admitting that, at first, he may have trouble moving both sides of his little body.
According to CNN, Anias had suffered breathing problems, seizures and heart issues prior to the surgery, but is doing well after the separation and is in the hands of the dedicated staff at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore Medical Center in New York.
The resilient parents, who moved their family from Illinois to New York to be closer to their sons' surgeon, began fundraising for the inevitable procedure last year.
Since launching their GoFundMe campaign in September 2015, they surpassed their goal of $131,000AUD and received more than $366,000AUD.
While the couple did end up deciding to go through with the operation, they were aware of the complications that included major risks like death or brain damage.
We wish the McDonald family the best in their twins’ recovery!