Published: Friday, March 25, 2016 @ 7:09 PM
By: Cox Media Group National Content Desk
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A pediatric nurse formed such a strong bond with a baby in the NICU that she just had to adopt her.
Amber Boyd had cared for Nicole since she was a few months old.
Nicole suffered from a rare birth defect called omphalocele, which caused her organs to develop in a sack outside of her body, according to the Today Show.
Amber quickly became little Nicole’s primary nurse.
"She was with us for 18 months and that whole time I was her primary nurse and formed that bond," Nicole said. "She is just a fighter… she is a great kid."
KOB reported that Nicole's medical needs were too much for her family, and her mother's parental rights were terminated.
Nicole, who has a twin sister who does not have the same condition as her and lives with biological relatives, became a ward of the state of New Mexico.
As her health improved, caseworkers started to discuss where Nicole would go after she was discharged.
Boyd, who was adopted as a child, realized she could take in the baby girl. Her husband, Taylor Boyd, quickly agreed.
"I don’t think I was surprised at all, honestly," Taylor Boyd said. "I think (Amber’s) just a very selfless personality. It is very much in her nature. Just any chance she gets, she does everything she can to be selfless."
Nicole soon moved in with her new parents, and she underwent surgery in October to close her belly and attach her abdominal muscles.
The Boyds became Nicole's foster parents. In February, they officially adopted her.
Now Nicole is 3years old and is the picture of happiness.
"She's incredible," Amber Boyd said. "She has learned in one short year … to crawl, stand and walk."
The family has had challenges, however.
Nicole has to have her trach changed daily and has dealt with multiple surgeries and cardiac arrests.
But the Boyds are happy to have Nicole in their family.
"I can't imagine a time without her," says Taylor Boyd. "We have only had her for a short amount of time (but) she has become a huge part of the family."
Amber Boyd's older sister, Meli Gonzales, set up a GoFundMe page to help the Boyds buy a new car to help foster more children with special medical needs.