On the season finale of Duck Dynasty season five, the Robertsons threw an encouraging party for Jase and Missy’s daughter Mia as she prepared to have surgery for the fifth time. The brave 10-year-old, who was born with a cleft lip and palate, proceeded to have a successful bone graft operation.
Mia has endured plenty of obstacles in her first decade on earth, yet her parents understand she is a gift. Perhaps part of the reason, is due to the fact they at first suffered a miscarriage when trying for their third child:
"I'd heard of tubal pregnancies for years, but didn't really understand the mental anguish of actually having to go in and have someone remove what could've been your child. It was extremely difficult, and there was a lot of pain and bleeding," said Missy, describing her tragic ectopic third pregnancy.
But then along came Mia. After learning their daughter would be born with birth defects, Jase couldn't help jumping to the conclusion that their daughter would be ostracized because of her appearance, he candidly shared with US Weekly:
"Here I am, worried about what she's going to look like, while the doctors aren't even sure she can breathe on her own. From that moment on, I stopped being so superficial. It's been a life-changing experience for me and Missy because of how shallow we used to think."
Leave it to an innocent child to change hearts and minds. After witnessing Mia's shining spirit, here's how Jase summed up his new view on life:
"Life's a gift," said Jase to Closer Weekly. "As long as we're living, we can get through anything."
His own daughter is an inspiring example of endurance - and her upbeat demeanor proves she possesses poise beyond her years:
“I honestly was never scared about having surgery. It wasn’t the first time, you know?” admitted Mia, who had her first operation at just 3-months-old. “Besides, I had my mom and dad with me, and I knew God would be with me the whole time.”
Mia has even encouraged her family to start the nonprofit Mia Moo Fund to support research and treatment for other children with her condition. You can follow the organization's efforts at miamoo.org.
The Duck Dynasty finale dedicated to Mia was a beautiful episode dedicated to a beautiful young woman. There's nothing like a brave child to open our eyes to the beauty and preciousness of life. Mia's constant courage and positivity will undoubtedly continue to inspire those around her. I can't thank the Robertsons enough for sharing her with us. I'll leave with you with another beautiful quote from her proud duck hunting father:
"As she's gone along with her surgeries, I feel like God gives, with his special challenges, an extra measure of character. People are drawn to Mia and others like her who have perseverance and joy despite difficulties. That's how I realied true beauty. Now you can't even tell, unless you're real close, that she's had any problems. She's a beautiful girl and that beauty on the inside is what built that. She has an incredible smile."