'Is this a joke?': Ipswich mum's shock at surprise baby news

THE road to parenthood has been a long and heart-breaking journey for one Ipswich couple.

Kate Darmody and her husband, Ben, always dreamed of starting their own family, and were ecstatic when they found out they were pregnant with their first child.

Sadly, things didn't go to plan, and Mrs Darmody suffered a miscarriage.

Losing what would have been their first child was a traumatic experience for the pair, but there was even more heartache to come.

The couple tragically miscarried two more babies.

"We had a really rough time trying to have kids," Mrs Darmody said.

Despite the loss of three babies, the couple was still determined to have the family they always dreamt of.

That is when they turned to IVF.

What happened next can only be described as a miracle.

Mrs Darmody fell pregnant with triplets.

Ben and Kate Darmody with triplets Alex, Lachlan and Evie.
Ben and Kate Darmody with triplets Alex, Lachlan and Evie. Rob Williams

"We couldn't believe it when our specialist told us at our eight week scan that there were three heartbeats," she said.

"We thought the doctor was playing a trick on us because we didn't think there was a possibility of having triplets."

Despite enduring a high-risk pregnancy, it was a case of fourth time lucky for Mrs Darmody.

She gave birth to three beautiful babies on June 19, by caesarean, at the Mater Hospital.

The triplets arrived one day shy of 33 weeks gestation.

It was also a very special present for their dad, who was celebrating his birthday.

Lachlan was the first triplet to be born, followed by his younger sisters Alexandra and Evelyn.

The day after they were born, Lachlan had to have surgery as he was born with Esophageal Atresia, which is a rare birth defect in which a baby is born without part of the esophagus (the tube that connects the mouth to the stomach).

He was placed in intensive care while his two younger sisters were placed in special care.

All three babies were transported to the Ipswich Hospital until they were healthy and strong enough to return to their Newtown home.

The triplets are now 10 weeks old have settled into their new life and are keeping the new parents on their feet with feeds and nappy changes.

But the sleep-deprived parents wouldn't have it any other way.

"We lost three babies and we got three babies back, so we are very happy," Mrs Darmody said.

"We are so in love with these three precious little babies."