BLACKFOOT– Chelsea and Nick Torres love their kids and their personalities. Callie and Carter Torres made the news even before they were born. Chelsea found out the girls were conjoined in utero: there was a very slim chance, five to twenty percent, that they would survive. They moved to Texas to give the girls the best chance of survival. The hospital in Houston has experience with conjoined twins and the Torres girls have blown away all the statistics.
They turned two at the end of January and have been slowly making progress. They recently learned the girls are deaf in one ear and will need a Bone Anchored Hearing Aid (BAHA). This device is used to aid hearing when there is little or no hearing in one ear. When a conventional hearing aid would not be helpful, this implant helps the patient hear through the use of bone conduction.
The girls are babbling and forming words to get things they want. "They can say the words. Not exactly string them together but they know a lot of words. They look at you and say 'cheese' and sometimes we get a ‘please.’ When they don't know (the name of) what they want, they say ' what’s that' and point to it very aggressively" Nick says. "We finally got them to say ‘juice’ and ‘food.’ It was frustrating ‘cause’ we knew they would want something. We wouldn't know what they wanted and we would try and figure it out. It took a long time for them to figure out the words for things," Chelsea says.
Chelsea likes watching her girl’s personalities come out. Carter is the more dominant of the twins and when she wants something she will go after it. Callie tends to go with the flow, but when she doesn’t want to do something, she can hold her own strength-wise. Jaysin is their other child and he has been wonderful with the girls. "Every once in a while, they will try and take what he has but he has been really good with them. He tries to carry them around the house," Nick says.
The girls have been showing interest in crawling and hopefully soon will be interested in figuring out walking. "We checked out another pair of (conjoined) twins who didn't learn to walk until they were nine. The doctors say they will figure it out, but it is frustrating because I know they want to play at the parks, but we can't hold them all the time," Chelsea says. The girls are like other two-year-olds, picking little fights with each other but then loving on each other.
The community has been really nice to them when they go out to dinner. Every once in a while, people will come up and say they saw them on Youtube or read about them in the newspaper. "People have been supportive, oddly enough people in the UK are super interested in learning about the girls. They have been nice." Nick and Chelsea have a Facebook page with videos of Callie and Carter and the adventures the whole family go on; it is called "Beating the Odds with Callie and Carter." They also have a Youtube channel of videos with the girls.