Parents

'They really are superheroes': Nurse dresses NICU babies in costumes for Halloween

When a nurse at a North Carolina hospital wanted to make special Halloween costumes for the babies in the neonatal intensive care unit this year, she didn't have to look far for inspiration.

"I figured what better theme than superheroes for those little preemies that fight so hard,'' Katie Windsor told TODAY. "They really are superheroes, so it was perfect."

Windsor, 35, a registered nurse at Catawba Valley Medical Center in Hickory, turned the tiny babies in the NICU into Superman, Batman and a host of other characters, including witches and princesses, for a series of adorable pictures.

Parents dealing with the stress of seeing their babies in intensive care were happy to have a lighter moment as their children's first Halloween approached.

"The parents loved it,'' Windsor said. "[It] really gave them something to smile about when they are in a sad time in their life, when they're having to go home without their babies. I think it brought them a little bit of joy."

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Windsor spent a few days creating the backgrounds from scraps of fabrics and then crocheting the capes and the witches' hats. She also made little broomsticks for the witches.

Some of the babies were receiving oxygen or IVs, so she dressed them up in their beds rather than placing them on the backgrounds she created.

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The parents, who signed consent forms for the pics, were given Halloween cards from the staff and extra copies of the photos.

"It makes me feel good that people get to see these babies,'' Windsor said. "I don't think people think about the NICU unless they've had a baby that's had to go there. I'm glad it's bringing recognition to our NICU and what we do."

Follow TODAY.com writer Scott Stump on Twitter.

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