I am the VERY proud mother to Bereniz Marielda who was born 5/5/2000 with a unilateral cleft lip and a bilateral cleft palate. We found out about her cleft when I was seven months along in my pregnancy. She was my first born, so the news of the cleft, along with other scary diagnosis that she may be born with, completely devastated me.
She came into the World six weeks early, so when I was finally able to hold her in my arms and look into those big beautiful eyes that finally made me a mother, I fell completely in love with my daughter.
Over the past eighteen years, Bereniz has been through countless surgeries for repairs and each one has added to the strong woman she has become. We've scheduled life around the repairs and made it work. She is so resilient and honestly the most brave person I know.
She will be graduating from high school next month, going off to college in the fall, and moving on with the rest of her life. Her goal is to become a surgeon and travel the World to help children with clefts. I could NOT be more proud of this young woman. I can confidently let her go, as hard as that my sound, knowing that I've done everything I can to provide her with the knowledge she'll need to keep flying. She has taught me so much about love and life. Bereniz is an amazing person and I know she'll go on to do amazing things.