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An Open Letter To The NICU Volunteer

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As I sit here and watch my daughter sleep, I can't help but smile when I look down at her wrapped in her blanket. It's been her favorite one lately, and is an essential for nap time. She rubs the soft yarn against her face and pulls it in close as she drifts to sleep. It might be her favorite blanket, but it's mine too.

It's the blanket that was crocheted by some sweet soul that I will never get the privilege to meet. Maybe it was made by a grandma who spends her days keeping her hands and mind busy to pass the time, or maybe by a momma who had been in my shoes before and wanted to bring some light into a dark place. I don't know who made this blanket, but I hope they know how appreciated they are.

As I stood in the corner of that busy PICU room, and I felt the weight of my husband's arm around me, the only reaction I had was tears. There were so many doctors and nurses surrounding the bed, that I could barely see my baby. And as I listened to them give orders and begin to work on her, I cried the tears that she was too sick to cry. She should have fought the IV's and intubation, but she was too busy fighting for her life. Her tiny body was almost too exhausted to continue fighting the RSV running rampage on her poor lungs.

When things calmed down and we were settled into what would be our new normal for the next week, our sweet nurse walked in with the most precious little blanket, and draped it over our daughter. It was crocheted and donated by a volunteer, and this little blanket was the touch of home I needed in that stark hospital room. It was the blanket I tucked around her for those days, because in my mind it made her seem less sick than when she was wrapped in the stiff, white hospital blanket.

That little blanket brought me comfort in that time, and I prayed many times for whoever made it. It was the blanket I buried my face in at 3 am when her stats would refuse to stabilize and tears of fear and frustration fell, and it was the blanket I wrapped around the both of us when her feeding tube was removed and I finally got to nurse her again.

And now I watch the same little girl almost a year and a half later, carry that blanket around the house wherever she goes. And I can't wait to tell her the story of that blanket that we both love so much. And if you're one of the kind souls that does any sort of volunteering for these hospitals and children, thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart because I would bet that you don't realize the impact and comfort that you're bringing to these families. You. Are. Appreciated.


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