If you read comics or go to the movies, you know that superheroes come in all shapes and sizes with different gifts and weaknesses. For the nurses in the Neonatal ICU (NICU) at Renown, those superheroes are infants who display a fierce determination to survive in the face of life-threatening medical issues.
At the NICU’s annual graduation picnic, nurses celebrated the infants who touched their lives in 2014, including Jeffrey Cordell — a sweet infant who’s undergone more surgeries in the last year than many of us will experience in a life time.
Jeffrey came into this world weighing less than 2 1/2 pounds with complications from his premature birth 11 weeks early. He spent months in the NICU before finally going home with his family.
NICU Babies Are Superheroes
The theme of this year’s NICU graduation picnic was superheroes — quite fitting for Jeffrey and the other babies in attendance who spent the first few days, weeks or months of their lives in the NICU, struggling to beat the odds of survival. The picnic was a wonderful time for Jeffrey’s family to reunite with the NICU team that cared for him during those difficult and tenuous months.
Erika Cordell, Jeffrey’s mom, recalls the pain of not holding her son until he was three weeks old. She speaks of her dismissal from the hospital and leaving her son behind. “That is the hardest part — when you have to go home without a baby.”
Today Jeffrey’s doing great and has quite the personality, Erika says. Learn more about Jeffrey and Erika’s experience and the invaluable role of the NICU in helping these tiny superheroes live to see another day.