Cheri Price was just 23 weeks pregnant when her daughter Hailie was prematurely born.
Hailie weighed a mere 1 pound 2 ounces on the day of her birth. Her skin had still not developed pigmentation, making her brain and veins visible through her skin.
For the first seven minutes for her life, Hailie could not breathe, but was eventually resuscitated. Days later, one of her lungs collapsed. It would be 18 days before her parents Cheri, 22, and Timothy Dillon, 32, could hold their daughter.
Hailie’s parents spent the next three months at the James Cook Hospital in Middlesbrough on England’s northeast coast.
“From birth, she was put in an incubator and we couldn’t touch her — but we could see all the veins of her brain through her red skin,” Price said, according to the Daily Record.
“We thought we would lose her at so many points,” Price continued.
Hailie’s parents eventually transferred her to a specialist hospital, where they were able to save her sight, although her retina was not properly developing.
However, Hailie defeated the odds and was brought home on June 19, only two days after her original due date, according to local media. She just celebrated her first birthday on Feb. 23 as a healthy child.
Hailie’s extraordinary case of survival could now call into question the NHS ruling on abortion before 24-weeks gestation, which was previously seen as the earliest a newborn could survive outside of the mother’s womb. Hailie was born one day before this abortion limit.
“I am so proud of her,” said Price. “What we’ve been through and what she has been through has been horrendous.”