TULSA — Nurses in the Hillcrest Neonatal Intensive Care Unit handed out Valentine's cards to parents of babies in their care.
Each card has the baby's footprints and their picture free of tubes and wires.
"I cried," Ellyce Thomas said as she held her baby girl. "I cried like a baby. I thought it was super sweet. They just really make you feel like family like you're at home and not in the NICU every day."
Thomas rocked Everlee Rose, who is hooked up to several wires and tubes. She was born January 2nd and came more than 15 weeks early.
The new mother said her baby girl changed Valentine's Day for her forever.
"She's my forever valentine, that's for sure," Thomas said. "Just means that I will always have love from her and I'll always be able to show my love to her."
Everlee and her mother brought gifts for the nurses in return.
"She just wanted to give a little of the love back they give her every day," Thomas said.
Caitie-Beth Robertson is a new mom of triplets, Ava, Catherine and Oliver. Valentine's Day marked their two week birthday.
The card Robertson and her husband got was a big deal.
"This is the first time we've seen them all side by side, which was quite a gift," the new mom of three said.
The nurses at Hillcrest's NICU make cards for their parents for every holiday. It is not part of their job. They pay for it themselves and start planning months in advance.
"The happiest experiences I have had in my career is those mornings [when we hand them out]," registered nurse, Grace Switzer, said.
The cards made a lasting impact on the parents who will spend yet another day at the hospital with their babies.
"It feel like this is something my mom would do or [my husband's] mom would do, so it makes us feel a lot more like we are at home or a lot more like we are with family, which is extremely comfortable," Robertson said.
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