Michael’s Story

MichaelSon of Kim & Edward Aldarelli

My pregnancy was a text-book pregnancy -- no problems to speak of other than the occasional nausea or minor spotting. On August 10, 2005, our second son, Michael James, was born. He was a healthy 8.5 lb baby, delivered by c-section just 1 ½ weeks before his due date. Everything was wonderful, and according to the pediatrician, Michael was in perfect health. Family and friends joined my husband and I at the hospital to celebrate his birth, bearing gifts and well wishes. Four days later Michael was routinely discharged from the hospital and we joined his three-year-old brother at home. The first few days were as expected, Michael slept a lot and we encountered a few feeding issues, but nothing raised any concerns – it was typical newborn behavior. At one week old Michael had his first doctor’s appointment and he was given a clean bill of health, as he was gaining weight and all his vitals were great. Over the next two days Michael continued to have feeding problems and I was in daily contact with his doctor.

On the night of August 20th Michael became inconsolable and did not want to eat. My first son was colic, so I didn’t think this was unusual behavior, but on instinct I called the pediatrician. I was told to bring Michael to the emergency room if he didn’t calm down in the next 30 minutes. Michael did stop crying and then he drank a bottle and fell asleep. The next day my family was over and Michael began to experience labored breathing. As my husband and I were preparing to take him to the hospital, Michael took his last breath in my sister-in-law’s arms. I immediately called 911 and my husband performed CPR until the paramedics arrived. My life as I knew it would never be the same. Michael was pronounced dead that night at the hospital despite countless efforts to save his life. He was baptized after his death and was put to rest on August 25th. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of him and wish I could have saved him. We were told that there was nothing we could have done and even if we got him to the hospital sooner, the outcome would have been the same. According to the medical examiner, Michael died from viral myocarditis. The examiner was not able to isolate the virus which caused Michael’s death. My husband and I are now the proud parents of our third son, John Michael, born on February 7, 2007. I can’t thank Phyllis and Andrew enough for all they have done to raise awareness about this cause so dear to my heart. They turned their tragedy into hope for others and I am honored to be a part of R Baby Foundation. Together, through research and education, we will find a way to end these senseless deaths and save babies lives.