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How My Son's NICU Nurses Changed the Trajectory of My Life

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To My Son’s NICU Nurses,

When I was a NICU mom seven years ago, you mentored me, advocated for me and taught me how to be a warrior for my child. You didn’t know it, and probably still don’t, but I’ve carried the things you taught me throughout the years as I’ve learned to navigate the road of having a child with special needs.

Because of you, I learned how to be brave. I was scared to hold my son until I saw you do it and then hand him to me with a calming smile. And with all the surgeries and unfamiliar lines and cords and tubes coming from him, boy, was I ever afraid. But you just smiled.

It was your reassuring presence that helped me while I was here and what I took with me when we went home. Once home, I took your lead and became an advocate, many times having to stand up for what he needs – the same way I saw you do when the rest of the team had different opinions than you. You held your ground and won for my son.

Now that I’m here in the NICU as a staff member, I see so much more of what you do and how much you care for these babies and their families. I especially love seeing how you love these kids, even when no one is looking. You are the reason I went to nursing school and the reason I came back to this very NICU. You are a hero at the bedside and a champion for these kids and their families.

It’s not often that a person can say the trajectory of their life changed because of what someone else demonstrated, but I can, and I am eternally grateful.

This post originally appeared on Nurse Efflorescence.

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Originally published: May 8, 2015
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