Florida couple ask nurse at NICU to be their son’s godmother

‘She was the only one who really knew him’: Florida couple whose baby boy spent SIX MONTHS in the NICU ask the sweet nurse who cared for him as he fought for his life to be his godmother

  • Austyn Evans, 28, from Florida, was 35 weeks pregnant when she delivered her son, Conrad, at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston on December 15
  • Nurse Carly Miller, 27, cared for Conrad during his first five days in the NICU and developed an immediate bond with Evans and her husband, Branden Williams
  • The newborn had kidney problems and breathing difficulties that required him to be put on a ventilator, leaving his parents unable to hold him for over a month 
  • Evans found comfort in her communication with Miller, whom she felt was ‘the only one who really knew Conrad’
  • The mom felt so strongly about Miller’s presence in her son’s life that she requested for her to continue to be his primary nurse when he started dialysis
  • Conrad spent six months in the NICU, and the new parents asked Miller to be their son’s godmother after he was released from the hospital 

The parents of a baby boy who spent six months fighting for his life in the neonatal intensive care unit asked his doting nurse to be his godmother and always be a part of his life. 

Austyn Evans, 28, from Florida, was 35 weeks pregnant when she and her husband, Branden Williams, welcomed their son, Conrad, at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston on December 15. 

The newborn had kidney problems and breathing difficulties that required him to be put on a ventilator. Nurse Carly Miller, 27, cared for Conrad during his first five days in the NICU and developed an immediate bond with his parents. 

‘The way she talked to him when she was doing his vitals or she was taking blood, she was constantly talking to him in this really cute little mom voice and trying to be as comforting as she could even though he was extremely sedated,’ Evans told Today of the ‘charismatic’ NICU nurse. 

Austyn Evans, 28, from Florida, and her husband, Branden Williams, welcomed their son, Conrad, at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston on December 15

Austyn Evans, 28, from Florida, and her husband, Branden Williams, welcomed their son, Conrad, at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston on December 15

Nurse Carly Miller, 27, (right) cared for Conrad during his first five days in the NICU and developed an immediate bond with him and his parents

Nurse Carly Miller, 27, (right) cared for Conrad during his first five days in the NICU and developed an immediate bond with him and his parents 

Evans had been moved from her local hospital in Florida to Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women after her 20-week anatomy scan detected that her son had a kidney blockage and would likely need special care after birth. 

The mom-to-be also didn’t have any amniotic fluid, a disorder that is known as oligohydramnios. Low amniotic fluid increases the risk of miscarriage or stillbirth and can also cause severe abnormalities, including underdeveloped lungs.  

The goal was to have her baby grow as much as possible, but he had to be delivered early after his heart rate started dropping. 

The newborn had kidney problems and breathing difficulties that required him to be put on a ventilator, leaving his parents unable to hold him for over a month

The newborn had kidney problems and breathing difficulties that required him to be put on a ventilator, leaving his parents unable to hold him for over a month

Evans found comfort in her communication with Miller, whom she felt was 'the only one who really knew Conrad'

Evans found comfort in her communication with Miller, whom she felt was ‘the only one who really knew Conrad’

Conrad relied on machines to help him to continue to grow after he was born, and his parents weren’t able to hold him for over a month.   

Evans found comfort in her communication with Miller, who was ‘the only one who really knew Conrad.’

The mom felt so strongly about Miller’s presence in her son’s life that she requested that she continue to be his primary nurse when he was moved to another pod to start continuous renal replacement therapy, a special type of dialysis. 

The mom felt so strongly about Miller's presence in her son's life that she requested for her to continue to be his primary nurse when he started dialysis

The mom felt so strongly about Miller’s presence in her son’s life that she requested for her to continue to be his primary nurse when he started dialysis

Miller was initially hesitant about following Conrad because it was the first time this type of dialysis machine was being used with the hospital's NICU patients, but she eventually agreed

Miller was initially hesitant about following Conrad because it was the first time this type of dialysis machine was being used with the hospital’s NICU patients, but she eventually agreed

'A lot of the doctors did not think he was going to make it,' Miller told Today. 'He was one of the smallest babies we’ve ever put on the machine'

‘A lot of the doctors did not think he was going to make it,’ Miller told Today. ‘He was one of the smallest babies we’ve ever put on the machine’

Miller was initially hesitant about following Conrad because it was the first time this type of dialysis machine was being used with the hospital’s NICU patients. Despite her concerns over her lack of experience, she agreed to take on the challenge. 

‘A lot of the doctors did not think he was going to make it,’ the nurse told Today. ‘He was one of the smallest babies we’ve ever put on the machine, so it’s pretty groundbreaking for them to have Conrad get through it.’

Miller remained a constant source of information and comfort for the baby boy’s parents, who quickly noticed how their son responded to her presence. 

Conrad's parents quickly noticed how he responded to Miller's presence, and Evans recalled how her son's eyes 'lit up' when he saw the nurse

Conrad’s parents quickly noticed how he responded to Miller’s presence, and Evans recalled how her son’s eyes ‘lit up’ when he saw the nurse 

Conrad spent six months in the NICU, and the new parents asked Miller to be their son's godmother after he was released from the hospital

Conrad spent six months in the NICU, and the new parents asked Miller to be their son’s godmother after he was released from the hospital

Miller was brought to tears and immediately agreed to being Conrad's godmother, saying it was 'the coolest thing' that has ever happened to her

Miller was brought to tears and immediately agreed to being Conrad’s godmother, saying it was ‘the coolest thing’ that has ever happened to her 

‘One of the nights that I was leaving Conrad I was waiting for Carly,’ the mom said. ‘He was just super fussy — I mean ridiculously so. And the moment he saw Carly his eyes lit up. He was super smiley. And when I tried to grab him go give him a hug before I left, he shooed me away.’

Evans said the thought of never seeing Miller again after Conrad was released from the hospital at six months old was ‘heart-wrenching.’ She wanted her to be her son’s godmother but didn’t ask before they left. 

She ended up inviting the nurse to visit with a special surprise in mind. She gave her flowers and a note from Conrad asking her to be his godmother. Miller immediately accepted. 

‘I started bawling. I was like, “Are you serious?” Miller recalled, saying it was ‘the coolest thing’ that has ever happened to her. 

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