Bode Miller is opening up about his family's tumultuous few months.
The 41-year-old former Olympic skier stopped by Today on Tuesday, where he discussed the October birth of his newborn son and how it has helped his family heal just months after his 19-month-old daughter, Emmy, died in a tragic drowning accident.
"If there's one thing that can kind of help to heal and fill that spot in your heart, it's a baby. And he's a special one," Bode told Today's Savannah Guthrie of his son with wife Morgan Beck Miller. "Besides the lack of sleep, it's been a really nice process to be able to go through."
Bode expressed awe at his 31-year-old wife following the birth, gushing, "We already knew that she was magical, but this was incredible."
After the home birth of their 9.9-pound baby, it was time to name their newborn. The couple finally settled on Easton Vaughn Rek Miller as the name of their son, who was born just one month after Emmy would have turned two.
"We got all kinds of criticism for it, but it's just kind of the way [it happened]," Bode said of waiting to name Easton. "If you go in a hospital, you have to [name the baby]. You can't leave the hospital. But a home birth, you can do whatever you want. All the kids were going to school and everyone was like, 'What's his name?' They were like, 'We don't really have one. We just call him baby brother.' Everyone thought we were just crazy. It took us three weeks, but once we got to know him it was really clear."
"I think we kind of cheated because Von Miller, the football player, seems like such a unique dude, so I think we kind of went off of that," Bode quipped, before revealing that Morgan isn't nuts about the name, including "Rek."
"She's nuts about it not being his name," he joked. "I pushed it through. But I think we have a good compromise system."
While the parents are delighted with little Easton, the grief from the loss of their daughter still lingers.
"There's a blessing to being so busy in a way. Your days go by really slow because there's just a lot a stuff and the kids. That kind of emotional strain is still there," he said. "But then the months just fly by. I think any parent can relate to that. It's unbelievable. It's been six months since we lost Emmy and then, at the same time, seven weeks already for Easton."
"I think we see the path forward a little bit, it's kind of just keeping going and trying to stay positive," he added. "But yeah, it's not easy. I don't think it gets that much easier."
“It’s unbelievable. It’s been 6 months since we lost Emmy — and then at the same time — 7 weeks already for Easton. We see the path forward a little bit.” -@MillerBodepic.twitter.com/uN7bcbfJLk
When the couple sat down with Guthrie back in June, a pregnant Morgan admitted that she was worried about welcoming a new baby into the world after losing one.
"That was my first concern. Besides the fact of never being able to see my daughter again, it was, 'How am I supposed to bring a new baby into this world with just losing my baby?'" a sobbing Morgan said at the time. "Emmy was so excited to be a big sister, she walked around all the time with her baby. Now we have the opportunity to love that baby not only for ourselves, but also for Emmy."
As for Emmy's memory, it's alive and well in the Miller house, which also includes the couple's 3-year-old son, Nash, and Bode's two kids from a previous relationship, Neesyn, 10, and Samuel, 5.
"The kids talk about her all the time, which I think is really good, but obviously hard too," Bode said on Tuesday. "I mean, we have to. She's everywhere in our house. You notice it. You feel the loss, but she's still a part of our family."
“The kids talk about her [Emmy] all the time, which I think is really good but obviously hard too…You feel the loss, but I think it’s just, she’s still a part of our family.” -@MillerBodepic.twitter.com/fL5HPNXgoe
Since the tragic accident in June, Bode and Morgan have dedicated themselves to spreading the word about water safety. The drowning statistics from this summer appear to be less than normal, something that brings the couple some semblance of relief.
"You always hope that what you're doing is [helping]. I think there was some catharsis to it as well," Bode said. "We wanted to try and affect change. I think, while statistics probably won't really reflect the right stuff for years because that's the way statistics work, but we definitely noticed in our area, just the awareness. People were paying attention to it more."
For Bode, his biggest piece of advice to parents is to speak to their child's pediatrician about drowning dangers.
“My call to action was always for people to address it with their pediatricians. I think that’s the missing link that’s the most sort of easy to address. I had never heard about it from a pediatrician.” @MillerBode on raising awareness about children and drowning pic.twitter.com/8llkYmTVCN
"I think that's the missing link that's the most sort of easy to address. I'd never heard about it from a pediatrician and I'd gone to so many wellness visits that it started to be a little bit ridiculous that the number one thing had never been brought up," he said. "... No one wants to be negligent. I don't think we were. It's just one of those things. I think it's more about directing some energy into areas where it can affect change."
Bode Miller through the years
Bode Miller through the years
Olympic skier Bode Miller poses after an interview in New York June 15, 2015. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
America's Bode Miller, skiing in only his second World Cup season, skis to 8th place from a 43rd start position in the men's World Cup giant slalom November 20. The surprise finish was a personal best for the 21 year old from Franconia, NH, and the best U.S. time. Stephan Eberharter of Austria won the event.
Bode Miller of the USA celebrates after winning the World Cup men's
giant slalom race in Val d'Isere, December 9, 2001 in a total time of
two minutes 36.02 seconds. Frederic Covili of France placed second and
Stephan Eberharter of Austria was third. REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
Bode Miller of the United States slams his way through a gate on his
way to a silver medal in the men's combined downhill skiing at the Salt
Lake 2002 Olympic Winter Games, February 13, 2002 in Snowbasin. Miller
had a total time of three minutes, 17.84 seconds to win the silver
medal in the combined competition. REUTERS/Ruben Sprich
Italian Davide Simoncelli skis to his second place in the men's World
Cup Giant Slalom at Alta Badia December 22, 2002. U.S. skier Bode
Miller won in two minutes 33.81 ahaed of Simoncelli and Austrian
Christian Mayer. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini
Kjetil Andre Aamodt of Norway bites his bronze medal after the Combined
event at the World Alpine Skiing Championships in St. Moritz on
February 6, 2003. Bode Miller of the United States won the gold medal
in a total time of three minutes, 18.41 seconds ahead of the Norwegians
Lasse Kjus and Kjetil Andre Aamodt. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini
Bode Miller, of the United States, pushes out of the start gate to take
his first run as the FIS Men's World Cup Downhill training began in
Lake Louise, Canada, November 26, 2003. Lake Louise Winterstart will
host the men's first downhill of the season on November 29. Miller
posted a time of 1.51:10. REUTERS/Mike Blake
Bode Miller of the U.S. smiles after placing second in the men's Alpine skiing World Cup slalom in Adelboden, Switzerland, February 8, 2004. REUTERS/Marcus Gyger PLA/CR/
Bode Miller of the United States leans on his skis after he placed first in the Men's World Cup Super-G in Lake Louise, Alberta November 28, 2004. Miller had a time of one minute, 28.18 seconds. Austrian skier Hermann Maier was second and teammate Michael Walchhofer was third. REUTERS/Andy Clark AC
Bode Miller of the U.S. concentrates before the third training session in the men's Alpine skiing World Cup downhill in Chamonix, French Alps, January 7, 2005. Miller clocked the second best time. Mont Blanc is seen in the background.
Miller of the US smiles as he poses with his gold medal after winning the men's Super-G race at the Alpine World Ski Championships in Bormio. Bode Miller of the U.S. smiles as he poses with his gold medal after winning the men's Super-G race at the Alpine Ski World Championships in the northern Italian resort of Bormio January 29, 2005. Miller won the race ahead of Austria's Michael Walchhofer who placed second and Austria's Benjamin Raich who came in third position. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay
Bode Miller of the US skis with one ski only during the men's combined downhill at the Alpine World Ski Championships in Bormio. Bode Miller of the US skis with one ski only during the men's combined downhill at the Alpine World Ski Championships in Bormio February 3, 2005. Miller, the overall Ski World Cup leader did not finish the race. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay
Last year's ski World Cup overall championship winner Bode Miller of the U.S. talks during a news conference in the Tyrolean ski resort of Soelden, Austria October 20, 2005. The alpine ski World Cup starts on the Rettenbach-glacier in Soelden on Saturday. REUTERS/Dominic Ebenbichler
Bode Miller of the U.S. leaves the start house during the first training run for the men's Olympic downhill race at the Torino 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Sestriere, Italy, February 9, 2006. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay
Bode Miller of the U.S. passes a pole during the first slalom leg of the men's Olympic combined race at the Torino 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Sestriere, Italy February 14, 2006. Miller was disqualified after straddling a gate in the first leg of the slalom. The leaderboard initially showed the American overall World Cup champion nearly one second ahead of Austrian world champion Benjamin Raich after the first leg but television replays showed he had straddled the 42nd gate and he was disqualified. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini
Bode Miller of the United States smiles in the finish area after the second day's training session in the Men's Downhill World Cup in Val Gardena, northern Italy December 14, 2006. Switzerland's Didier Cuche clocked the best time ahead of his team mate Ambrosi Hoffman. REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi (ITALY)
Bode Miller of the U.S. sits on the chair lift after the third practice of the men's Alpine skiing World Cup downhill race at the Lauberhorn in Wengen January 10, 2008. Miller finished on the first place ahead of Manuel Osborne Paradis of Canada and Klaus Kroell of Autria. REUTERS/Pascal Lauener (SWITZERLAND)
Bode Miller of the United States is airborne during the first practice for the Alpine Skiing World Cup downhill race in Kitzbuehel January 15, 2008. REUTERS/Michael Leckel(AUSTRIA)
Two-time skiing World Cup overall champion Bode Miller answers a question at a media conference in Los Angeles, California September 24, 2009. Miller announced he is rejoining the U.S. Ski Team and will compete on the Audi FIS World Cup in hope of qualifying in his fourth Olympic Winter Games. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok (UNITED STATES SPORT SKIING OLYMPICS)
Bronze medallist Bode Miller of the U.S. waves during the medal ceremony for the men's Alpine skiing downhill competition at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics in Whistler, British Columbia, February 15, 2010. REUTERS/Issei Kato (CANADA)
Bode Miller of the U.S. misses a gate during the first leg of the men's World Cup slalom skiing race in Val d'Isere, French Alps, December 12, 2010. REUTERS/Robert Pratta (FRANCE - Tags: SPORT SKIING)
U.S. skier Bode Miller attends a news conference in the Tyrolean ski resort of Soelden October 20, 2011. The alpine ski World Cup opens with a women's and a men's Giant slalom onBS the upcoming weekend in Soelden. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger (AUSTRIA - Tags: SPORT SKIING HEADSHOT)
Bode Miller of the the U.S. skis during the men's Alpine Skiing World Cup Downhill race on the Kandahar course in Garmisch-Partenkirchen January 26, 2012. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay (GERMANY - Tags: SPORT SKIING)
Olympic alpine skier Bode Miller poses for a portrait during the 2013 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit in Park City, Utah September 30, 2013. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT OLYMPICS SKIING PORTRAIT)
Bode Miller of the U.S. goes airborne in the first training session for the men's alpine skiing downhill event during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics at the Rosa Khutor Alpine Center February 6, 2014. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini (RUSSIA - Tags: OLYMPICS SPORT SKIING)
Bode Miller of the U.S. skis during the third training session for the men's alpine skiing downhill event at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics at Rosa Khutor Alpine Center February 8, 2014. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger (RUSSIA - Tags: OLYMPICS SPORT SKIING)
Bode Miller (R) of the U.S. stands next to his wife Morgan after finishing the downhill run of the men's alpine skiing super combined event during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics at the Rosa Khutor Alpine Center in Rosa Khutor February 14, 2014. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger (RUSSIA - Tags: OLYMPICS SPORT SKIING)
Bode Miller of the U.S. speeds down in the men's Super G competition during the FIS Alpine Skiing World Cup finals in the Swiss ski resort of Lenzerheide March 13, 2014. REUTERS/Ruben Sprich (SWITZERLAND - Tags: SPORT SKIING)
Feb 5, 2015; Beaver Creek, CO, USA; Bode Miller of the United States kisses his wife Morgan Beck after crashing during the men's Super G in the FIS alpine skiing world championships at Birds of Prey Racecourse. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports
Olympic skier Bode Miller poses after an interview in New York June 15, 2015. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
Former Olympic gold medal winner Alpine skier Bode Miller smiles during an interview in Innsbruck, Austria, January 3, 2018. REUTERS/Philip O'Connor