I am so excited to share this project with you today. Warning, get the tissues ready!
For decades, Huggies has believed in the power of hugs to help babies thrive. They’re inspired by the amazing benefits hugs have on babies and want to spread that power to those who have given so much.
They are also committed to ensuring that no baby goes unhugged, and this conviction drives everything they do. No Baby Unhugged is Huggies vision to ensure all babies get the hugs they need.
As part of this larger program to ensure no baby goes unhugged, Huggies is awarding $10,000 grants to 25 eligible hospitals throughout 2017 to enable them to launch a new volunteer hugging program or expand support for an existing program.
Psst – you can help give more hugs when you become a Huggies member. Sign up at Huggies.com/NoBabyUnhugged and Huggies will donate $5 to No Baby Unhugged grants!
As a member of the Huggies Parents Council again this year, they asked me to find a way to send a hug to a deserving NICU nurse and I was all over it!
I put the word out and our contributor, Kristin, quickly found the subject of our post today, Emily Thompson… Blogger that I am, I figured the best kind of hug I could give would be a “virtual hug” here on MPMK in the form of a post spotlighting the incredibly impactful work that Emily does.
Here’s Kristin with that amazing interview…
Emily Thompson is a mom of a toddler and soon to be twins. She’s also a NICU nurse at a local hospital. Before babies #2 and #3 arrive, Emily took the time to sit down with me to share a behind the scenes look at the life-changing work that takes place in the NICU.
What made you choose this career?
I have always loved babies, to the point that I would go around after church when I was in upper elementary and just hold people’s babies while the mamas got to chat with their friends. I’d just stand and hug their babies and be 100% focused on their tiny bundles.
I also was the babysitter extraordinaire! I rarely had a weekend night free from babysitting SOMEONE’S family, so I knew I wanted to work with kids, but especially babies.
My mom said when I was in middle school I mentioned wanting to be a NICU nurse, however, I’m not sure I knew exactly what that meant at the time.
Can you share one of your favorite stories from the NICU?
My favorite story from my time of working in the NICU was with Ryder. This sweet boy was born at 25 weeks weighing in at 1lb 4oz. The moment I saw his adorable little face and blonde hair, I started calling him my little NICU boyfriend.
His parents and I got along instantly and we bonded over their precious little man. We would joke and say I loved him like he was my own.
He had a very long stay in the NICU and many hurdles to get through before he went home. His parents were dedicated and myself and another nurse were their primary nurses. We were able to advocate for Ryder and his parents in a way other nurses couldn’t necessarily since we knew the ins and outs of his story.
Ryder’s parents were able to take him home after 135 days in the NICU. It was a long and crazy road, but he has come so far and is, to this day, doing so well!
Can you tell me about the impact that hugs have had on your NICU patients?
Human touch, such as hugs, are extremely important for NICU patients. It really makes a HUGE difference when patients get held/hugged when parents/family can’t visit.
We have a wonderful hugging program at our hospital where volunteers go through special training and background checks. They come in during their free time to come snuggle and love on our patients that need that human touch most.
My mom is actually a hugger in our unit! She LOVES the time she is able to spend hugging on our babies.
Do you have a memorable hug story from your time in the NICU?
One of the most memorable hug stories I have from the NICU is sending my primary patient, Ryder, home. He was being discharged home during the day, which wasn’t my shift, so I came in early to be able to say my goodbyes and send them on their way.
The last hug and snuggle with Ryder were very special, but even more so was the hugs I received from his parents. They were so grateful and thankful for all the work I had done (as well as the other nurses) to be able to send them on their way home.
As hard as it was to say goodbye to such a dear family, I was excited for Ryder to continue growing up at home with his family.
Along with a HUGE virtual hug, we’re also sending Emily a gift basket of Huggies Little Snugglers and Huggies Natural Care Baby Wipes for all that she does. Our best wishes go out to her beautiful growing family!
How can you make sure no baby goes unhugged?
Don’t forget, you can help give more hugs when you become a Huggies member. Sign up at Huggies.com/NoBabyUnhugged and Huggies will donate $5 to No Baby Unhugged grants.