Wednesday, March 25, 2009


My daughter Maria has been through more than a few things in her young life. She arrived back in 2000 with a cleft lip and palate and she's had to undergo a number of surgical procedures over the course of her life to deal with this issue. Tomorrow morning she does so again, this time to have a bone graft in her upper jaw. We'll be at Gillette Children's tomorrow morning for the surgery and she should be home on Friday.

I give Maria a lot of credit, because she's been a pretty good sport about all the hassles she's had to endure. She's an amazingly tough-minded kid and she doesn't really feel sorry for herself. One of the things that I've noticed is that children, for all the gaps in the knowledge and all the fears they have, are often better at adapting to challenges than some adults are. Maria is that way and we see a lot of resilience every time we go to Gillette. You see something that might break your heart every time you go there, but you also see a lot of hope and even more joy.

As a parent it is your responsibility to teach your children, to impart the hard-got wisdom you've gained over the course of your life. But I'm convinced that Maria has taught me more than I'll ever be able to teach her.


W.B. Picklesworth said...

Please don't sell yourself short. She's not acting that way for no reason. You and your wife have raised her.

That said, it's great to hear that she is courageous and has a good attitude. Those characteristics will serve her well.

Gino said...

hurray!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! for maria.
no doubt, she's a toughie.

my prayers go out for a successful procedure tomorrow.

kingdavid said...

We have something else in common then; our Hannah inherited Stickler's Syndrome from Katherine, and one of the symptoms is cleft palate. We had her for about 5 minutes before they whisked her off to intensive care, and that's where she spent her first month.

They eventually sewed her tongue to her front lip so that she wouldn't choke. It was like that for the first year, and we had to snake a tube down her nose to feed her.

It sounds like Maria has had a few more surgeries than Hannah needed. We'll definitely keep her in our prayers tomorrow. Katherine will especially touched to pray when I tell her.

Marge said...

Mark, I had no idea Maria was having another surgery! I hope things went very well.

You're right that she is a tough kid, a good sport, and a wonderful, unique, creative and dynamic little person! Lots of loving prayers for comfortable healing coming her way from her Auntie Margie and Uncle Butcher!

Mark Heuring said...

Thank you to all. Maria's surgery went well and she's going to be staying overnight at the hospital, but should be home tomorrow. Your prayers and support mean a lot.