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As any parent who's had a baby in the NICU knows, the NICU staff becomes a second family—one you will never forget. They're often the first ones to hold your baby, feed your baby and tell you all the updates you're anxiously waiting for throughout the day. The day your baby is finally released is a bag of mixed emotions, as you're so grateful and excited to take your baby home but also a little sad to lose this invaluable support system.
So in honor of National Neonatal Nurses Day on September 15, Kleenex decided to produce a video called "Tiny Miracles." And when Renee Hendrix, a NICU nurse at WellStar Kennestone Hospital in Marietta, Georgia, was asked to participate in the video, she had no idea what was in store for her.
The heartwarming video starts out with Hendrix talking about all of the families she's worked with throughout her 30-year career as a NICU nurse. She's then taken to a video she's told she needs to watch, which features many of the NICU families she's served over the years talking about how thankful they are for Hendrix. Of course, lots of Kleenex tissues are needed.
But that wasn't the real surprise.
When the video ends, Hendrix looks up to see all of the families—with the now-grown babies—walking in holding up pictures of themselves in the NICU. It's a powerfully emotional moment that's sure not to leave a dry eye in the house.
Seriously, you'll need to have tissues on hand for this one.
As the dedicated nurse says in the end of the video, "I love taking care of these babies. I don't do what I do for any kind of thank-you, but it's a wonderful feeling to be appreciated."
Hendrix tells the The Huffington Post, "It was great to see all of the kids big and healthy and thriving. I definitely felt appreciated and loved. I was just so proud of them. To know I had a part in that was very overwhelming and gratifying."
What an amazing tribute to NICU nurses everywhere.