A nurse in Florida had always wanted to be a mom. For three decades, this was just a dream, until an abused toddler was admitted into the hospital where she was working. It was then that she decided to make her dream a reality.
Jess Hamm has been working as a nurse in the pediatric intensive care unit at the Wolfson Children’s Hospital in Jacksonville for many years, and always joked that she wanted to be a mom to all the children who were admitted there. The 30-year-old dream came true in March 2017.
When 14-month-old Delilah was admitted to the hospital for non-accidental trauma, Hamm connected instantly with the toddler.
“She had a skull fracture with a brain bleed from her head trauma,” Hamm told InsideEdition. “She had a broken femur, multiple fractures in all of her extremities. She was very malnourished. She was 14 months and about 11 pounds (approx. 5 kg), so she was just skin and bones.”
Hamm held Delilah’s hand as the staff worked to stabilize the toddler.
“I just said, ‘Oh my gosh, I want to take you home. I already love you,’” she recalled.
A few hours after she decided to take Delilah home, Hamm learned that the toddler had a twin sister named Caroline who was also admitted to the hospital.
Hamm called the Florida Department of Children and Families and spoke with the toddlers’ case worker.
“I gave him all my information and a few hours later he called me and that same day he came to my home. That was Friday,” Hamm said. “The following Monday I was approved and I brought Caroline home. That was actually the day I got to meet [her].”
When Hamm’s colleagues heard about her decision, they started to donate toys and children’s clothes. Hamm also bought two cribs and two car seats.
With Hamm’s unconditional love, the twins were soon thriving and meeting their developmental milestones.
Hamm officially adopted the girls on Halloween.
“I’ve always wanted a family,” Hamm said. “I’ve always been open to adoption. I didn’t expect it to happen right now. It wasn’t part of my plan, but once I met them and I made the decision in my heart to open my home up and give them somewhere safe.”
Hamm hopes that her story will inspire others to reach out to orphaned children just like she did.
“I hope when people hear my story it opens them up to the possibilities of adopting,” she told CBS 47.