The NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) is a special medical facility catering specifically to the needs of newborn babies, most of which are premature but also those full-term babies with various complications.
It is also a place where many little ones have passed away, a place where nurses often have to deal with the loss of innocent lives too weak and too ill to live.
Nurses in the NICU have to be extra tough and extra hardworking just to ensure they get to save as many lives as possible inside this rather tough work environment.
They have saved countless lives inside the NICU, even a number of babies they didn’t think could make it past their shift.
Parents of NICU patients are often eternally grateful to the staff for helping their babies. For this reason, tissue company Kleenex partnered with WellStar Kennestone Hospital in Marietta, GA to surprise a special NICU nurse, Renee Hendrix.
In her 30-year career as NICU nurse, Renee could not count how many little lives she has saved yet she takes joy in her job as she had long dedicated herself to this tough challenge.
She recalls how wonderful it felt when the tiny ones survived, even those who they thought would not last past their shift. We agree with her, it takes a special kind of dedication to be a NICU nurse.
What Renee did not know is that the hospital and Kleenex contacted some of the people she helped through the years. They were asked to record a message for Renee which she tearfully watched on a tablet.
After she watched the touching messages from the parents, a door opens.
In come several children and their parents, holding blown up photos of the NICU babies who have now grown up as healthy kids! Renee was speechless at first, overcome with emotion, but was soon chatting excitedly with the parents and hugging the kids she helped in the NICU in the past.
If given the chance to work in another nursing field, woud she have chosen something outside NICU? Perhaps not.
This is what she has to say about being a NICU nurse, “To work with babies that you thought would never even make it out of here and just knowing that you had a part of (helping them survive)?. It is just a wonderful feeling.”