A Special Starlight Visit to the NICU with Supporter and Actor Eric Winter

Baby Camilla came into this world nine weeks early. Claudia, a new mother, experienced a fairly normal pregnancy, only suffering from unwanted bloating a few times that sent her to the hospital. Then, everything changed when at 31 weeks and 4 days, Claudia gave birth.

At just 4lbs., Camilla needed to be under constant supervision and remained in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at White Memorial Hospital in Los Angeles, Calif. Each day without her baby at home was difficult, especially since she and her husband are full time students, work part-time jobs and are both reservists in the Marine Corps. Nonetheless, they still made their schedule work.

Never Too Early to Read to Your Child

“We both went to see our daughter on a daily basis. I would stay two nights and my husband stayed another two nights with me,” Claudia said.

Recently, it was just a normal day for Claudia at the NICU, as she rocked baby Camilla back and forth. Then she heard Starlight was at the hospital with a special visitor. Starlight supporter and actor, Eric Winter, co-wrote a brand-new children’s book called “Sebi and the Land of Cha Cha Cha” with his wife and actress Roselyn Sanchez. It’s a brightly illustrated book following a young girl name Sebi as she dances her way through a magical land. Eric wanted to read his book to kids in the hospital so they could experience the land of Cha Cha Cha themselves.

Baby Camilla with her mom and dad at home after one month in the NICU.

“It was a wonderful experience to have him visit and read to us in the NICU,” Claudia said. “It was a fun distraction and we both enjoyed it. I ended up buying the book for my daughter to read to her at bedtime.”

Research shows that babies begin processing sound in the last trimester of pregnancy. That means, it’s never too young to read to a child.

Starlight Brings Joy, Comfort and Reading to the NICU

After a month and two days in the NICU, Camilla is home.

“Camilla is doing great and finally at home, getting stronger, bigger and more beautiful every day,” Claudia said. “She is getting to spend more time now with her grandparents, aunts and uncles, and of course us.”

Camilla may not remember Starlight’s hospital visit that day, but we’ll hold the memory close to our hearts forever.

You can help us continue to create these moments of joy and comfort by donating to Starlight today. Your donation along with the donations of others will be used to provide innovative programs such as Starlight Brave Gowns, Starlight Fun Centers and Starlight Virtual Reality to kids when they need it most.

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About the Author

Tara Millspaugh

Digital Media Manager

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