At last week's annual March of Dimes Celebration of Babies, there were plenty of noteworthy celeb guests in attendance. Elizabeth Banks, Steve Carell and Reese Witherspoon showed up to lend their support for the organization's ninth annual luncheon.
But when actor Chris Pratt stepped up to the podium to share the story of his own son's birth, you could almost hear the sound of a million hearts fluttering in the audience. That's because, let's be honest, every woman out there loves her some Chris Pratt, but also because the actor proceeded to tell the heartwarming story of his son's premature birth, which just made our crush on him grow even bigger.
Opening up to the crowd, Pratt shared how his now 2-year-old son Jack spent a month in the NICU when he was born, after his wife (actress Anna Faris) went into labor nine weeks early. The experience, he said, altered the way he viewed fatherhood forever.
"I've done all kinds of cool things as an actor—I've jumped out of helicopters and done some daring stunts and played baseball in a professional stadium, but none of it means anything compared to being somebody's daddy," Pratt said, as hearts around him melted.
During that challenging month in the NICU, Pratt says his favorite moments were those he spent cradling little Jack, skin-to-skin. "I made promises in that moment about what kind of dad I wanted to be, and I just prayed that he'd live long enough that I could keep them," he said.
Little Jack was teeny tiny at first—only 3 pounds, 12 ounces, which Pratt joked is "a decent-sized bass," but "very small for a human." Today, though, he's a rambunctious little toddler who's happy as can be. And Pratt says that's all thanks to the dedicated doctors that helped his son, and the continuing support of organizations like the March of Dimes.
"Our Jack went from a small, helpless little squirt to a strong, smart, happy, funny, beautiful boy who loves monster trucks and 'Daniel Tiger,' and, believe it or not, loves vegetables," he said proudly.
"None of what we went through would be as easy even 10 years ago," the actor added, noting that the NICU is a place where life and death hang in the balance—"a balance that's tipping towards life by cutting-edge medicines, much of which is a direct result of this wonderful organization, the March of Dimes."