LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Elise Kay Lowery is a red haired, blue eyed little girl that is the light of her parent's Whitney and Mark Lowery's lives.
But things weren't always so easy for this family.
Elise's mother Whitney Lowery had a premature birth and said that she never expected it to happen to her.
"You have this image in your head when you want to have a baby that it's going to go as planned and it doesn't always go that way as many people know." Lowery said.
Elise was born on September 16th 2014, eight weeks earlier than her mother's expected due date, where she spent thirty five days in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Woodland Heights Medical Center in Lufkin.
"It was shocking we did not know that she was going to be born that night. Both of my parents were actually out of town and I don't think anybody was able to make it to the hospital by the time that she was born." Lowery said.
That next month was a whirlwind for both parents having to spend long nights away from their baby.
"It was really strange going home after your baby's born, without your baby. It's just a strange concept. You never think of that happening. It was really hard and there were a few times that we would just go home and cry." Lowery said.
Now two years later Elise is a healthy beautiful little girl who just started her first year of school.
"You would never know that she started out so small. She is crazy, her attitude is bigger than her body and she's just the life of the party everywhere she goes." Lowery said.
One of Elise's favorite things to do is visit the zoo where her mother works.
"She loves to go to the zoo." Lowery said.
Now her parents try and make sure that they cherish every single waking moment with their little angel.
Whitney also has some words of wisdom for any mother going through something like this.
"Whenever I hear of other people going through the same thing I just wish I could tell them it's really tough when it happens, but you get through it and you almost like don't even remember how hard it was and how scary it was." Lowery said.