(KWES) - Each year in Texas, almost 41,000 babies are born prematurely. Those who survive often face life-long health problems. March of Dimes is a leader in providing research, education and vaccines for families dealing with the complications that come with premature birth.
This weekend, Midland will put on their 2017 March for Babies benefiting those families.
"You could literally see their heart beating because their skin was still translucent," said Emily Bonvino, mother to twin preemies.
Travis and Elisabetta don't have a care in the world. They play, fuss and fight just like any baby their age, but getting to this point hasn't been smooth sailing.
"Having them home, you just go back to thinking about how you didn't know what was going to happen," said Emily.
Emily and her husband Craig struggled to have children. Finally, through in vitro fertilization, the two conceived twins.
Just a few months into her pregnancy, something happened.
"Since I was only 23 weeks along, I didn't expect anything," said Emily.
In July 2015, four months before Emily's due date, her water broke.
"I called my doctor and she said, 'honey, you need to go to the doctor now," said Emily.
Emily checked herself into hospital and after 12 days, the twins couldn't wait anymore.
Travis was born at just 1 pound 3 ounces. His baby sister, Bebe, weighed 1 pound 4 ounces.
The next step for the family was dealing with the twins' medical issues.
"We've had numerous blood transfusions. They've had heart surgery. It's hard to see your child or children in that state. They were so small," said Emily.
The family wasn't in it alone, March of Dimes was there every step of the way.
"They do a lot of research for premature babies and do a lot of awareness for infant mortality. As a parent, it was great to have the resources that they provide in the NICU and just the encouragement," said Emily.
This July, the twins will have their second birthday. The Bonvino family has come a long way.
"It makes you appreciate every single little thing," said Emily.
The March of Dimes will hold their walk at Midland College at 10 a.m. on Saturday.
Their goal is to raise $210,000. If you would like to participate, visit http://bit.ly/2pjOhS2.