FAIRMONT - The life of 3-month-old Camdyn Ballard has been full of ups and downs already, but her parents, Cory and Amber Ballard, say she has taken it all in stride.
"She's been amazing," Amber said. "When she was first born she looked rough, and she was hooked up to everything, but she breezed through."
Camdyn was born June 24, but had a due date of Sept. 18.
Amber, Cory and Camdyn Ballard
"The whole pregnancy was rough," Amber said. "In May, the placenta detached, and I was on bedrest. Then on June 9, I was airlifted to Rochester when my water broke."
When the problems with the pregnancy began, doctors told the Ballards their baby had only a 25 percent chance of survival if born at that time. However, if Amber could stay pregnant up to week 28, the odds would go up to 90 percent survival.
"We missed it by two days," Cory said.
Camdyn's birth weight was 1 pound, 13 ounces, and she was only 12 inches long.
"She's a fighter," Amber said. "But she's also the mellowest, calmest baby. Even when they were putting IVs in her. The nurses fell in love with her."
There were some health scares, as when doctors believed Camdyn's intestines weren't working. Also being a premature birth, Camdyn's lungs were underdeveloped.
"She went through two blood transfusions," Cory said. "We also learned that there was a small hole in her heart."
Currently, Camdyn is on a small amount of oxygen, but was able to come home about two months earlier than expected.
"She handled everything so well," Amber said. "She has a fun little personality. She's definitely a miracle baby ... We came home last week, even when everyone thought we'd be there until November."
Camdyn will need to be monitored closely for the next two to three years to make sure she catches up developmentally and physically to other children her age.
"They think she'll only need to be on oxygen for one more month to three months," Cory said. "They did two tests on her brain, five on her eyes, a hearing test, and she did great on all of them."
But from May through September, the Ballards lives in Fairmont were put on hold. Amber has been on leave from her job at Profinium bank since May. Cory, a deputy with the Martin County Sheriff's Office, was able to stay at an apartment in Rochester provided by the Rochester Police Department, but he missed out on summer activities and plans with his other children.
Even though the family is now back home, the Ballards know that Camdyn is not yet out of the woods.
"The first three nights home I slept on the floor of the nursery," Amber said. "Then the sheriff's wife brought us a bassinet, so she could sleep in our room. She still has things hooked up to her at night that monitor her, and if one of those alarms goes off at night, it's very stressful."
A benefit for the Ballards is being held at Legends in Ceylon from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sunday. Breakfast will be served with a free-will offering and there will be a silent auction. Donations also can be dropped off at the Profinium banks in Fairmont and Truman.
"The support we've received from people, the people we work with, has been unreal," Cory said. "We get emotional because you get people who really want to help you and give, even if it was just feeding our animals or mowing our yard ... It's amazing to feel that."