Sextuplets

the Harris Sextuplets
ESSENCE.COM Apr, 08, 2009

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Diamond and Chris Harris share the demands of being parents to seven children. They admit having that many kids can put a damper on a couple’s relationship. “You don’t have time to even talk to each other anymore,” says Diamond. “We’ve had to learn about each other all over again.”

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The most difficult part of her pregnancy was getting a good night’s rest. Diamond had to sleep sitting up and had problems breathing. She also experienced back problems from the weight of carrying so many children. “I didn’t have cravings but I wanted water all the time because I was so dehydrated,” says Diamond.

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The nurses told Diamond they weren’t even allowed to go out of town for that last month of her pregnancy. A team of 35 doctors and nurses with pink and blue binders worked together to prepare for the delivery of all six children.

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The Harris sextuplets were delivered on July 7, 2002, within three minutes of each other and weighed between 1 lb. 3 oz. and 1 lb. 12 oz.. All of their names begin with the letter K as a homage to their great-grandmother.

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The Harris sextuplets are the first recorded set of surviving African-American sextuplets in the country. Here, four of the six siblings take a snooze.

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Kaleb Reddrick Harris is cuter than a button and clearly ready for his close-up.

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The Harris sextuplets celebrate their second Christmas, looking for Santa to make his way down the chimney.

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Two girls, Kiera and Kaylynne, and four boys, Kaleb, Kobe, Kieran and Kyle, make up the Harris sextuplets. Their parents say that the sextuplets could recognize each others’ baby photos and they also had a secret “multiples” language before they could actually talk.

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Celebrating Easter a few years ago, Diamond and Christopher Harris say it takes practice taking their seven children out and they still haven’t mastered it. “I’m always worried about them making too much noise,” says Christopher.

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Big brother DeWayne sits in the middle of it all as the Harris children celebrate Easter last year (take a look at those stylish hats). No doubt they will continue to turn to their big brother for his sage advice as they grow older.

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The Harris sextuplets have had their share of camera time. They have been featured on “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” “The Montel Williams Show,” CNN’s “Larry King Live” and have had their own show, “Then Came Six” on the Discovery Channel.

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Caring for six kids and a teenager can be difficult, but Christopher and Diamond Harris put a lot into planning everything from family meals to making sure the kids complete their chores.

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Dad looks on as Kiera, 7, the diva of the group, and Kaylynne, 7, the big momma to her fellow sextuplets, enjoy a dinner out.

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Christopher is a third-grade teacher and his wife, Diamond, is a licensed practical nurse studying to get her surgical technologist certification. While they aren’t feeling the immediate crunch of the economic recession because of living on an already tight budget, they have experienced a huge loss in investments allocated for their kids’ college education.

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Yes, it’s possible to take a vacation with seven kids. Here, the Harris family enjoys some fun in the sun as they swim with a dolphin at Discovery Cove in Orlando, Florida.

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If Diamond and Christopher Harris ever agree on one thing it’s what they want for their children’s future. “I want them to grow up and be active members of society and have the things they want and be happy while doing it,” says Christopher.

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