A quick update on a child you haven't seen in six years: M.J. Rodriguez, a child who can see herself better than ever before.
Seeing life through the eyes of 12 year-old M.J. Rodriguez has been a tough journey.
"She had a lot of people stare at her, even adults, a lot of people don't know what to say or what to do so they just stare," says Brenda Rodriguez, M.J.'s mother.
M.J. Rodriguez was diagnosed with Marfan's Syndrome when she was only six years-old. A condition that affect's the body's connective tissues including the eyes.
"We didn't understand that she couldn't see, she simply could not see," says Ruben Rodriguez, M.J.'s father.
Through the years, M.J.'s glasses only got thicker and thicker, up to half an inch thick making it difficult to read.
"When I used to read, the book would be pretty much in front of my face," says M.J. Rodriguez.
But thanks to Dr. Sandra Brown at UMC, M.J.'s life is changed forever with a surgery that removed the lenses in her eyes.
"We actually went inside the eye and were working behind the colored part of the eye, and we completely removed the lense," says Dr. Sandra Brown, UMC.
This allowed M.J. to experience a world she had never seen.
"This surgery was just a miracle. Without this surgery, there's no telling where we'd be at," says Ruben Rodriguez.
"When we removed her lenses, she saw better than she ever had even without any kind of glasses at all," says Dr. Brown.
M.J. still has to wear glasses, but they're much thinner than her old ones.
"I can't believe I could see out of those!
"She's always going to be fragile. Her eyes will always be fragile," says Ruben. "As long as Dr. Brown and UMC are available, we'll be able to count on them for their help."