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Super-Rare Identical Triplets Born

Sure, we all hear of triplet pregnancies every now and then (heck, there are even triplet strollers now!) but when's the last time you heard of a mom giving birth to triplets that were conceived without fertility treatments? And not just fraternal triplets, but identical ones! Imagine Baltimore couple Kristen and Tom Hewitt's great surprise when they discovered at a routine ultrasound appointment that there was not one, not two, but three babies cooking inside.

The delivery of the shocking news was movie-worthy comical. At first, the ultrasound tech was silent, so Tom tried to break the ice by jokingly asking if there was "more than one in there" to which she replied in the affirmative. Then the dad-to-be thought he was keeping the joking going by asking if there was more than two. And we now all know what that response was.

The Hewitts join the very small club of parents to naturally conceive identical triplets. Because the instance of identical triplets is so rare, there aren't even statistics on it, but doctors tell ABC News that it could be as infrequent as one in two million. According to the American Society of Reproductive Medicine, conceiving triplets in general is rare, but almost all of them end up being fraternal or involve one set of twins. To have three identical triplets means that a single fertilized egg split three ways.

The three babies, Thomas III, Finngean and Oliver, were delivered October 6 and weighed less than 12 pounds collectively. They spent two weeks in the NICU and are now home in "excellent condition" with their parents and 11-year-old dog Jersey.

And now the real fun begins. To give you some perspective, a box of 100 newborn diapers will only last three to four days and we can't even begin to imagine the feeding schedule of three. According to Thomas, "We want to run things like a small army and be really regimented. ... In reality, it'll be more like a pirate ship complete with mutinies."

Congrats to the new parents!

RELATED: Incredible Stories of Twins and Triplets

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Photograph by: Greater Baltimore Medical Center

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