- For more than a year, her son in California had been sending her money. Finally she felt she had enough, and she paid all of it, more than $2000, to a man who promised he could get her and her three younger children across the Rio Grande safely into America. Shortly after midnight they had crossed the river, and the guide had said, “Wait here!” and disappeared into the night. Three hours have passed, and he hasn’t returned. She becomes convinced he has abandoned her, taken her money and fled. What is she going to do? She is lost and alone in the desert, with three children (the oldest is only twelve), and the sun will be rising soon. She suddenly understands that if they are lucky ... they will be captured. If they aren’t lucky, they will die out here. She prays--desperately, with no hope--but still she prays.... Suddenly a shadow looms against the night. A man is coming. Not her guide. Someone else. As she watches she realizes he is walking with a limp. So he can’t be someone to help them, he must be another wetback, another refugee who got lame on the journey and was left behind. “Mother Rosita?” he whispers. “Yes, how do you know my name?” “I am the man sent to help you. We have a truck two miles away. Are you and your children strong enough to follow me?” “Yes,” she says. “We will be stronger, now that we know there is help. Did you injure yourself looking for us?” “No,” says her new guide. “I was born with a club foot. No one ever suspects that I, with my disability, would ever be out walking in the desert, helping fugitives across the border.” And in that moment Mother Rosita realized she would never look at a crippled person in the same way, ever again. Even limping, this man ... had beautiful feet...
and another illustration