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Baby Born So Premature You Could See 'Veins of Brain' Through Skin Just Had 1st Birthday

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To say the last year has been an emotional roller coaster for parents Cheri Price and Tim Dillon would be an understatement.

The young parents from the U.K. watched their daughter seesaw between life and death for months and were powerless to do anything about it.

Cheri Price, now 22, gave birth to her daughter, Hailie Dillon at just 23 weeks and six days of pregnancy. Doctors could do nothing to stop Price’s relentless contractions; nothing more could be done than deliver Hailie and hope for the best.

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Hailie’s chance of survival was very bleak. Her bright red skin hadn’t had time to develop pigmentation, her tiny brain visible through her translucent skin and still-developing skull.

The 1-pound 2-ounces baby had a collapsed lung at birth. Hailie stopped breathing, and her parents waited an agonizing seven minutes before their daughter began to breathe once again.

“From birth, she was put in an incubator and we couldn’t touch her,” Price recalled. “But we could see all the veins of her brain through her red skin.”

The months after Hailie’s birth were filled with life in hospitals all over the country. Her parents had to fight to find hospitals that would properly care for their daughter, as more than one facility told the parents it was ill-equipped to care for such a high-needs child.

When Hailie was diagnosed with stage three ROP (retinopathy of prematurity), her parents feared their daughter would be blind. But after more doctor and hospital visits, doctors were able to save Hailie’s vision.

Miraculously, against all odds, Hailie celebrated her first birthday on Feb. 23 as a healthy, vibrant baby. Her beaming parents couldn’t be more proud of their tiny fighter.

“I’m so proud of her,” Price confessed. “What we’ve been through and what she has been through has been horrendous.”

Hailie’s parents have decided to close their childbearing chapter of life, saying that Hailie, her older brother Liam, and two step-siblings are enough. They are looking forward to a quieter year, one that no longer revolves around hospital beds, frequent travel, and scary life-and-death situations.

To see her now, one would never know Hailie had been through such an ordeal in her early months. Welcome to the world, Hailie Dillon!

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
Birthplace
Page, Arizona
Education
Bachelor of Science in Music Education
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Lifestyle & Human Interest




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