Destiny Destiny Folscher
Born August 13, 1994
Unilateral Cleft Lip & Palate

When History Repeats Itself

Growing up as a cleft lip and palate child was very emotional. The fact of being so different from the rest of the kids, not understanding what I had and why. Having to live with a cleft lip was bad enough, but wondering why me. I had my first repair when I was three months old. I had repairs until I was 17 years on both nose and lip. There was always room for improvement. Growing up was very emotional. Elementary was the hardest. During my elementary school years, I spent a lot of time fighting and running home to my parents. I had to end up putting a shield around myself to protect myself. Kids are cruel. I had to find out the hard way. Dr. Magee has been in my life for many years, he did several repairs over the years. I knew that he was nothing but the best for our daughter.

My biggest fear was passing this deformity from generation to generation. In our family, this deformity is hereditary. My uncle, myself and now our second child has it. Our first child had no cleft lip and palate. Our second child was born with a cleft lip and palate and our third child is fine. My only concern is for our daughter. We can deal with her deformity, the thing that is going to be hard is helping Destiny accept it. In our eyes, she is as normal as our next child. She was as beautiful then as she is now. I just hope times have changed and her emotional distress will not be as mine. When she was first born, my whole life experiences flashed before my eyes. No child should have to experience being made fun of. I do feel that my experiences have made me a stronger person. I will do the best that I can to make her a strong and positive person before she has to deal with the cruel jokes.

Dr. Magee repaired her lip when she was 10 days old. Times sure have changed. Instead of waiting three to six months for repair. I feel that is better emotionally for parent and child. The only problem that she has, is that certain foods come through her nose. Destiny is now 2 ½ years old and has had three surgeries. She looks great and not too many people recognize her cleft lip.

I am also concerned that she will have a fear of hospitals and doctors as I did. I feel that the changes are great for the future. I know that I am impressed with how they have updated CHKD with cartoon characters all over the walls, video games, toys, and TVs. I also think it is great that they allow a parent to go into the O.R. while your child is being put under anesthesia.

No matter how many years of experience that I have dealing with these upcoming years will be hard. We will do everything in our power to make this a positive experience and teach her that no one’s perfect. Hopefully, buy the time she reaches her school years, more kids and parents will be better educated on cleft lip and palates and this will be accepted in today’s society like any other problem.

John & Dina Folscher
Tel: (757)531-9195

Technogent, LLC
Operation Smile

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