— -- More than two weeks after the birth of her conjoined twins, Amber McCullough was able to hold her surviving daughter for the first time.
Amber McCullough gave birth to conjoined twin girls last month even though she knew only her daughter Hannah was likely to survive. Now more than two weeks later McCullough wrote that she has finally been able to hold Hannah for the first time.
Hospital officials confirmed that McCullough's other daughter Olive, did not survive the separation surgery and said that Hannah was in critical condition immediately following the surgery.
But weeks later, McCullough said that Hannah was finally well enough to be placed in her mother's arms. On Facebook, McCullough posted a picture of the first time she was able to hold her daughter.
"It instantly brought tears to my eyes," McCullough wrote on Facebook."On her 16th day of life I finally held my little girl. It took three people to move her to me with all her tubes but I got to hold her! I'm still so elated."
McCullough also gave an update on how Hannah was doing and said the infant could finally digest some breast milk.
"I'm so blessed by her," said McCullough."In some ways I see her and Olivia when I look at her and hold her."
After her daughters were born McCullough had nothing but praise for the staff that treated her at Colorado Children's Hospital.
“I believe in the power of prayer and the talent of medical professionals here,” McCullough said in a statement released by the hospital.
While McCullough said she was elated to finally hold her daughter Hannah, her joy was tempered as she now is planning the service for her daughter Olivia. McCullough said she wanted to set up a memorial fund in her daughter's name at the hospital.
"It would honor Olivia's life greatly if people would give back to this place, to provide resources for other babies a chance at life who are fighting a very difficult diagnosis," McCullough wrote. "She is forever in my heart and I'm missing her greatly."
Conjoined twins are rare and occur approximately once every 50,000 to 60,000 births, according to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.