OKLAHOMA CITY – We have an update on a baby we told you about in September 2022 – born at just 22 weeks gestation.

She’s more than a year old now – and continuing her fight after surviving surgery doctors say is unheard of for someone her age.

Cherie Malarney and her daughter Eris are familiar with the halls at OU Children’s Hospital.

“It’s not been easy,” Malarney told News 4. “It’s been hard for our family, financially, just trying to be here every day and we have three boys at home.”

Malarney was just 22 weeks pregnant with Eris when doctors told her she had to deliver her baby due to complications with preeclampsia.

Gloved hand holds Eris, Oklahoma baby born at 22 weeks, in NICU incubator
Gloved hand holds Eris, Oklahoma baby born at 22 weeks, in NICU incubator. Courtesy: Cherie Malarney

Eris spent the next year in the hospital battling health complications.

Though born tiny, her little miracle was born mighty.

“She went from 12.5 ounces to 23 pounds,” Malarney said. “I mean, like who does that? You know, she’s she’s done things that no one has ever expected her to do.”

Eris turned one on November 23rd. She finally got to go home December 13th, but her health battle was not and is not over.

Recently, Eris underwent a heart surgery doctors say was a first for someone her age.

“For this, we were actually going directly into the heart,” said Dr. Joanna Gernsback, who performed the surgery. ” So we had to get our cardiothoracic surgeon involved. So Dr. Burkhart was a huge help for us being willing to to take on something that he basically read a paper about and was like, Yeah, I can do that.

We had to actually, you know, get into the chest and open the heart to put the catheter into the heart.”

The surgery was a success and Eris was soon back to her normal self.

“She is just so feisty and just so funny,” Malarney said. “Like, her personality is just amazing.”

Eris, Oklahoma baby born at 22 weeks, with breathing tube in supportive chair
Eris, Oklahoma baby born at 22 weeks, with breathing tube in supportive chair. Courtesy: Cherie Malarney

Eris still has seizures and other complications, but her family is hopeful.

“It’s been quite a journey,” said Malarney. “Please continue to pray for her because we do still have a long journey.”

Eris is significantly behind other babies with milestones like walking, teething and even holding up her own head, but her mother says she’ll wait as her little miracle will get there in her own time.