Dallas NICU patients wear handmade Halloween costumes

Tiny patients at neonatal intensive care units in Dallas are having Halloween fun.

Nearly 100 babies in the Parkland Hospital NICU in Dallas are celebrating their first Halloween with costumes handmade by Parkland staff, volunteers, and parents. They created costumes like a rainbow, emojis, and costumes for twins, such as peanut butter and jelly.

“For most families, having a baby in the NICU is a completely unexpected and scary experience,” said Jennifer Porter, a NICU-certified child life specialist. “Dealing with the hospitalization of a child is difficult, especially for parents of newborns. Part of our job as child life specialists is to help families cope with this stressful life event by providing opportunities to focus on positive things — like celebrating Halloween by creating costumes for their babies who are unable to be home with family during the holidays.”

Martha Moreno’s baby has been in the NICU for two months. Her son will be dressed as Boss Baby for Halloween, a character she believes best fits his already-developing personality.

“I chose that costume because he’s strong, doesn’t give up and just likes being a boss about things,” she said. “Out of nowhere, he is just doing so much better. We have a bunch of hope that he will soon come home.”

Meanwhile, the babies at Methodist Dallas Medical Center are wearing costumes that were made by special education students in Arlington ISD.

The art project was inspired by the students’ teacher – Susan Berry. She regularly volunteers as a “cuddler” in the Methodist NICU where her daughter is a nurse.

A fellow nurse who is also a professional photographer snapped pictures of the babies to share with their parents and the students.