NICU nurses reunite with former patients

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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- The Med Center in Bowling Green hosted a NICU reunion for former patients to meet up with their former nurses Sunday afternoon.

"I'm so glad to see you. They're getting big now," says NICU nurse, Autumn Coulter.

Working with sick kids can be emotionally tolling, but often there's also those miracle stories.

"They've developed and grown like they should, it's amazing to see where they started and where they are now," says Christine Jenkins. Her first born and triplets spent weeks in the NICU.

Sick newborns are able to fully develop for a reason.

"I think that has a huge role in just the kind of care that they've had since they were born," says Shanna Myers, mother of five month old twins, formally in the NICU.

Nurse, Autumn Coulter has 15 years under her belt on the NICU floor.

"I've taken care of almost all of these babies that have visited today," says Coulter.

She remains energized by her patient's journeys.

"It's very rewarding because we do see them starting out so sick and tiny and fragile," explains Coulter.

It was even more rewarding on Sunday, reuniting face to face.

"For all she's been through, I mean, she was really mild manner, I remember, in the NICU," says Coulter talking to a mother.

The families of these former patients, just as happy to see Coulter and all the other nurses and doctors.

"To come back and see these folks that took care of them when they were little, when obviously I couldn''s like coming home," says Jenkins.

Clearly, a much needed reunion.

"I felt like I gained a family by the timeI left here," says Myers.

Everyone in the room at the Med Center reflects on the stories and journeys being told.

"They've come so far sometimes I just want to cry tears of joy," says Myers.

As smiles and laughter fill the room, some recognzie that this is not always the story within these hospital walls.

"As a parent you think you're going to have your baby and go home in a couple days," says Jenkins, "and when you have to leave them behind, it's tough."

But leaving them behind is made easier for these parents due to the care their sick ones received.

"I couldn't have done it without them," says Myers.

13 News did a story on the Jenkins triplets when they were finally brought home three years ago. Now, they're happy, healthy, and stronger than ever thanks to the medical care they received.

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