Siblings share the same genetics and it is common for them to share toys and clothes growing up, but how common is it for them to share the same life experiences at the exact same time?

Brothers and sisters share a bond unlike any other. It is common to fight like crazy as youngsters and grow to cherish the fact there is nobody else who understands your family environment the same way as you and your siblings.

The Ollig sisters grew up in Amery with their parents Scott and Linda and younger siblings, Andrea and Bobby. They have been strongly bonded for years. This is likely because sisters tend to be the ones who are by each other’s side through thick and thin and for every life lesson in between. Rachel Ollig-Wilson and Nicole Ollig-Newville have recently discovered if they need to talk to someone who knows what they are currently facing in life, the obvious choice is each other.

The family of the sisters was elated to find out both Newville and her husband Erik and Wilson and her husband Donny were expecting their first children in the fall of 2019. The Newville’s special arrival was due November 2 while the Wilsons due date was November 6. Wilson said she was really excited to be pregnant alongside her sister. “I was always nervous to experience pregnancy so it was exciting to know I could bounce things off of someone who was going through similar experiences at the same time,” she said.

Somewhere between planning baby showers, picking names and looking into Lamaze classes, things took an unexpected turn for both sets of parents-to-be. Wilson explained she developed Gestational Chronic Hypertension, which quickly developed into severe Preeclampsia. She said, “My blood pressure was getting too high and medications were slowly unable to keep it below a dangerous level.” Strangely, Newville also developed Preeclampsia. 

Preeclampsia is a condition during pregnancy where there is a sudden rise in blood pressure and swelling, mostly in the face, hands, and feet. Preeclampsia affects roughly 5 percent of pregnancies. Experts are not sure why preeclampsia occurs. Most say there is a problem with the development of the placenta because the blood vessels that supply it are narrower than normal and respond differently to hormonal signals. Because the blood vessels are narrower than normal, blood flow is limited. Until the mother's blood pressure comes down, she is at a greater risk of stroke, severe bleeding, separation of the placenta from the uterus, and seizures.

Preeclampsia is not cured until the baby is delivered.

An early delivery is exactly what happened for both Newville and Wilson. Newville was admitted to United Hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota, first. Shortly later, she received a text from her sister saying she was following in her footsteps. The two were roomed next to each other in the hospital. Because they were both restricted to their beds, they kept in contact by text messages and through family members who came to visit. 

Wilson said she was scared thinking about her baby being born early. “I was terrified. Just a week prior I was under the impression we had two months to prepare to be parents, to prepare her room, prepare for delivery, etc. I found myself very quickly not only facing the imminence of all of those things but now facing the fears of what could happen having a baby that was not yet fully developed. The doctors did try to let us know what the risks were ahead of time, but your mind always goes to the worst case scenario,” she said. Newville shared some of the same feelings as her sister but said; “I knew my daughter would receive care from Children’s Hospital, so I was put more at ease. They are the best at what they do.”

At 1:09 A.M. on September 18, Thea Grace Newville made her way into the world weighing four pounds, seven ounces. Her cousin followed a few hours later that same day. Madison Scott Wilson was born at 8:41 P.M. weighing four pounds three and a half ounces.

The two precious preemies were placed into rooms next door to each other at Children’s Hospital. Their families are thankful that everyone is doing well.

Wilson said, “We hope that the next coming weeks bring smooth and seamless progressions. Madison's full time job is going to be getting to 100% so she has a lot of work to do. We are thankful for the great doctors and nurses that have been doing everything they can to increase her chances of a quick recovery. I can’t help but think the two cousins will be close when they are older since they will have the same birthday and very similar stories of how their lives started.”

Newville shared her sentiments saying, “I hope the girls grow up knowing how much we love them, and I hope they are very close friends. I want them to always remember that their story is truly unique just like them.”

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