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Bliss as conjoined twin girls separated in historic surgery head home

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Bliss as conjoined twin girls separated in historic surgery head home

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 15 – It began with a march down hospital corridors and the kind of hubbub that generally accompanies the arrival of a dignitary.

The dignitaries on this day were to be found on the 4th floor in the paediatric wing of the Kenyatta National Hospital.

Clad in a black pant suit, hospital CEO Lily Koros made her way from the administration block of the hospital determinately, stopping only for a second at the lifts before making for the stairs.

Up on the 4th floor, it felt like Christmas.

There the celebratory mood was palpable as hospital staff fussed over the now famous twin girls, Blessing and Favour.

Going on three-years-old, for most of their young lives, the girls have called the hospital home and would for the first time go out into the world on Thursday and best of all, separate.

The girls were born conjoined, their lower backs fused together. On November 1, 2016, they were rolled into the operating theatre at KNH after being given a 50-50 per cent chance of survival.

READ: KNH doctors face hard task of separating conjoined twins

Twenty-three hours later, an exhausted 50-man team of medical personnel made history; they had successfully separated the girls.

Seven months later, the girls were doing so well that it was time for them to go home, in this case, Meru.

This should explain why they were all decked out in what could qualify for Sunday bests: matching flower print dresses with red doll shoes on their stockinged feet; the only exception was their belts, Favour had on a yellow one and Blessing a red one, perhaps to aid in telling them apart. “But they couldn’t be more different to me,” their mother Caroline Mukiri chimed.

“It felt so good the first time we saw the children look at one another because the way they were born, they couldn’t,” the Acting Deputy Director, Nursing Nancy Kariuki remembered.

The girls themselves however appeared impervious to it all. When Koros took them in her arms to lead them back down the corridors to a briefing room, one continued to play on her mom’s phone – which had a bright green cover on – while the other pulled on her faux pearls.

Their demeanours weren’t any different in the briefing room either despite all the clicking cameras and flashing lights or even when on the way there, their arms were held up to wave “bye.”

They went on fighting over their mom’s phone and demanding that their water bottles be put back within view despite the cameramen’s protests. “Mom,” one of them repeated incessantly, “maji yangu iko wapi? (where’s my water).”

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