Micaela was the fourth of six children. Her father was a day laborer and her mother a housewife. The pervasive machismo culture in Guatemala manifested itself in Micaela's father's lack of support for girls' education - she was only able to attend school until the second grade, and to this day she laments not having had the opportunity to continue. When Micaela was eight, her father passed away due to an illness not treated in time. This was a tragedy for her family, and he had also been the sole provider of the family. Following the passing of their father, Micaela and her siblings found themselves having to ask their neighbors for a donation of firewood or food because they themselves did not have enough.