Woman turns grief into giving

Blanchard donates handmade hats and blankets to AMC for preemies who don’t survive births

ER nurse Michaele Dobson accepts a box of handmade preemie and micro-preemie hats and blankets from Nicole Blanchard at Adirondack Medical Center in Saranac Lake. (Photo provided)

SARANAC LAKE – Nicole Blanchard channeled the grief she felt after losing her baby into the creation of more than 140 blankets and hats for premature and micro-premarture babies who don’t survive birth at Adirondack Medical Center.

Preemies are born more than three weeks earlier than the predicted due date and micro-preemies weigh less than 1 pound, 12 ounces or are born before 26 weeks gestation.

When Blanchard went into pre-term labor earlier this year, her baby was stillborn in the emergency department at Adirondack Medical Center.

She was given a handmade micro-preemie hat and blanket to wrap the baby in. She and her husband later took the items home to treasure in memory of their daughter.

After that, Blanchard went to work crocheting hats and blankets, and sewing more blankets, to be used in similar circumstances. She donated all the time she spent crocheting from January through March. She ended up creating a box full of them, which she brought to Adirondack Medical Center to donate this spring.

“I simply want to show my appreciation to the hospital and nurses that went out of their way during the most difficult time of our life,” Blanchard wrote on the Facebook page for her crochet work. “It is my hope that someone else may find comfort in having these tiny, handmade items during such a difficult time.”