Former “Below Deck Sailing Yacht” flight attendant Dani Soares has been open to fans in the past about the ups and downs of being a single mother and raising her baby Lilly alone in Australia.
In September 2022, Soares posted another update on the struggle to earn her degree in nursing while raising her daughter alone. As viewers know, the father of Soares’ baby is her “Below Deck” co-star Jean-Luc Cerza-Lanaux, whose involvement in the baby’s upbringing has been limited in the past, according to Soares.
The Brazil native shared a photo of her face, captioning it: “Here comes another selfie with an inspiring caption…” She added that she was on her last term of the year and it was “the hardest term yet!” Soares said:
Soares explained that she wanted to share the update to help others. “If you’re having a hard time, I don’t want you to feel alone,” she wrote. “Usually Instagram is about the perfect life, the big houses, the moms who put on makeup every day and I don’t agree with that. One challenge at a time, one day at a time. We have this.”
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Soares shared in the past that she wanted to be a nurse and revealed in April 2021 that she had enrolled in nursing school, Bravo’s The Daily Dish reported. “I love it,” she said at the time. “It’s amazing. I literally love every subject of it. And I’m really looking forward to it.”
Soares revealed on an episode of “Pita Party” with her former co-stars Alli Dore and Daisy Kelliher that she wanted to continue studying after the birth of her daughter. “I should have a month’s vacation after the baby is born, from school. It works really well with school holidays,” she said. “So, you know, it’s at least a month without studying, without work, just me and baby. And then I can just slowly study again and then after work. So it actually works quite well.”
She told Bravo that her interest in the medical field grew after being the medical officer on a few boats. “I was a medical officer, which means I had to take a first aid course,” she said. “I had to take care of medical equipment and things like that, so I’ve always enjoyed this side of things.” She added: “I just want to do something that I can be, I really help, I change people’s lives, you know? And I thought, now’s the time, I’m just going for it.”
“Below Deck Sailing Yacht” season 2 was filled with drama, especially between Soares and Cerza-Lanaux, after Soares announced her post-season pregnancy. She shared that her boatswain with the sailor led to the pregnancy, while Cerza-Lanaux publicly revealed that he wasn’t sure and wanted to take a paternity test.
Soares gave birth to her daughter Lilly in late May 2021, but Cerza-Lanaux did not acknowledge he was the father until January 2022. Soares revealed in a few Instagram stories that she was struggling financially and hinted that Cerza-Lanaux wasn’t pulling his weight.
The show’s captain, Glenn Shephard, told Us Weekly in May 2022 that he learned that Cerza-Lanaux was now a little more involved and was “setting up a college fund” for Lilly. “He talks to her on Zoom regularly because they’re far apart,” Shephard said. “Of course he has to keep working and I don’t think he can go to Australia to start a job.” Captain Glenn clarified that his information is second hand so he was unsure of the exact details of the situation.
On August 13, Soares wrote on Instagram that her daughter was always my number one priority! Only a true parent understands that life isn’t about you anymore, it’s about the life you made and brought into this world and that everything you do is for her.”
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