"I was a premature baby. I was only three pound, one ounce and born at 31 weeks," said Annalisa.
While pregnant, her mom Christine, developed a severe case preeclampsia. Her blood pressure was dangerously high and the baby had to be born early.
"The concept wasn't there that she'd be born early and I kind of threw a fit because I was scared, nervous and I didn't know what was going to happen. I didn't know how big she was," said Christine Bailey.
Annalisa had a long stay in the hospital but new medications at the time helped her grow into a healthy child. For that she credits the March of Dimes for raising money for such research.
"I just needed to give back to them and I decided that I could help them out because they helped me out," said Annalisa.
She's participated in March of Dimes walks and for two years held a talent show fundraiser. In three years, she's raised more than $5,000 for the organization. The money goes to funding research throughout the state, including UConn and Yale Universties, says Erin Jones of the March of Dimes.
"It makes me feel really happy to know all your hard work didn't just go to waste or it wasn't just fun, it's actually doing something for a really good cause," said Annalisa.
Christine couldn't be more proud of the young woman her tiny baby has grown into.
"She's seen so many pictures and videos and stories that she knows what it was like for me and her dad and the rest of the family and she doesn't want other people to have to go through that," said Bailey.