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Meet Emily & Spencer Miller


When I was 30 weeks along with Emily, I started feeling what I thought was having a lot of Brackston Hicks contractions. I decided to start counting my contractions while I rode the shuttle on the way to work (I worked for the hospital). They were coming every 15 minutes. 

As soon as the clinic opened at 8 am, I called the doctor and asked how many I was supposed to be having. They told me to drink water, take a bath…relax. My boss was nice and let me sit by his office to relax for a while. After a while my contractions were getting stronger and closer. I walked up to labor and delivery and they told me they couldn’t see my cervix, and I was dilated to 4 centimeters. I also had a fever. They gave me the drugs to try to stop my labor.

I spent hours on a bed with my head below my feet. Later that day the doctors told me I had an infection. They couldn’t treat me while I was pregnant, so they told me I would have to have the baby. 

Emily Miller, NICU Patient
Emily Miller, NICU Patient

My first thought was that she was too early. I was worried about her being so early. When she was born, she weighed 3 pounds, 9 ounces. I spent as much time as possible by her bedside. It surprised me that babies didn’t arrive knowing how to eat. The nurses were all so helpful and nice. They took such good care of me and my baby.

She was in the NICU for seven weeks. I was originally planning on spending the night with her once before I took her home. She was my first child and I was super nervous to take her home. But before I could spend the night the doctors decided that she could go home. She ended up sleeping much better than I did. I’d wake up throughout the night to check to if she was still breathing.     

Today she is a healthy 13-year-old. She has no complications and she rarely gets sick. Looking at her you would never know she came so early. She is in middle school, is learning the double bass, loves playing video games, building Legos, and would like to be a YouTuber when she grows up. 


When I was pregnant with Spencer, I had progesterone shots every week to try to prevent an early delivery again. When I was 30 weeks along, I woke up on my daughter’s third birthday, and started counting my contractions. 

When I realized my contractions were 15 to 20 minutes apart, I woke up my husband and told him I was going to the hospital. I didn’t want to wake up my three-year-old. So, I told him to stay and watch her, and to go back to sleep. (No, he didn’t sleep). 

When I got to the hospital, they told me I was dilated to a four. They gave me the drugs to stop my labor. My daughter Emily ended up spending her birthday with her grandparents, and I stayed in the hospital for several days. Four days later I woke up with a very big contraction. Then I thought… am I leaking?? So, I got up and checked. There was blood everywhere. I got scared and pulled the call cord. 

My son weighed 3 pounds 4 ounces at birth. I wasn’t quite as afraid for his health because I had gone through this before. But the first time I went to visit him after I got out of the hospital, I had missed his feeding, and couldn’t hold him. I broke down and sobbed—I didn’t want another NICU baby, it wasn’t fair! 

But I knew that the nurses would take really good care of him. I didn’t get to spend as much time visiting him in the hospital because my daughter wasn’t allowed to visit very often, or it was only for a very short time. I also knew that my three-year-old needed my time. Maybe she could handle having a baby brother better if I gave her as much attention as I could. I called every day though. 

He was in the NICU for six weeks, and came home with oxygen. It went off every time he wiggled, so I was very happy when he didn’t need it anymore. He had no complications and he is very healthy.

Today he is 10 years old and is in 5th grade. He enjoys school, Minecraft and building Legos. He also wants to be a YouTuber when he grows up.

Emily & Spencer

Emily and Spencer Miller, former NICU Patients
Emily and Spencer Miller, former NICU Patients

Meet Our NICU Alumni

This is a special project that documents our NICU alumni. We are so grateful to watch these amazing young patients grow into their lives, despite a challenging start.