Katrina Mullen, a NICU nurse from Indianapolis, has been in the nursing profession for 23 years. During her career, she has taken care of numerous moms and babies, but a particular family stands out.
Shariya Small was only 14 years old when she gave birth to preemie triplets at 26 weeks gestation. Mullen and Small formed a special relationship during the babies’ extended stay in the NICU.
Mullen, a mother of five and a former teen mom herself, offered Small a shoulder to lean on. Even after the triplets were discharged from the hospital, Mullen trekked the hour-long drive to visit Small and bring whatever was needed for the babies.
“If you need anything, I will be there for you,” the nurse told the teen mother as she left the hospital. And she meant it. Read more: https://t.co/3HR6BSuyJ1 pic.twitter.com/StIwVJ26Ae
— IndyStar (@indystar) March 8, 2023
When the Indiana Department of Child Services determined that Small’s home was unsuitable for the children and for the underage mother, Mullen knew they would be most likely placed in foster care and separated from each other.
Mullen told the Indy Star:
Just from being a nurse, I knew there would not be many foster homes that would take a teen mother with three kids… I didn’t want them to be separated. I wanted them to stay together.
Mullen invited the young mother and her triplets into her home.
After a year of fostering, Mullen officially adopted Small and her babies.
Small has continued to attend school. She is now 15 and has been accepted into two colleges with academic scholarships. Small recounted:
Everybody told me that I wouldn’t finish school, that I wouldn’t achieve my goals, but now I’m graduating as a junior and was accepted into two colleges with academic scholarships.
Mullen’s life has drastically changed after adopting the teen and triplets, but she is grateful for the opportunity to welcome Small and her triplets into her family.
It’s been great. Stressful? Yes. Sleepless nights? Yes. But worth it? Absolutely.
Mullen’s kind heart forever changed the lives of Shariya Small and her three children. Her story exemplifies the heart of the Gospel. Christ Himself shared with us the spirit of adoption when He said, “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” (John 14:18)
As Pro-Life Christians, we are called to follow Jesus’ example of selfless love and compassion. When we choose to serve others, we are demonstrating our love for God and fulfilling our purpose as His children.