An Interview with Maria Suarez by Cindy Powell
If you met her today, you would never know there was a time Maria Suarez had no hope for her future. Subjected to circumstances that would break even the strongest among us, she spent her days fighting to stay safe and sane. She wasn’t living; she was barely surviving.
But she did survive. Now that she is on the other side of the nightmare, she is speaking out. However, the first thing Maria wants you to understand is her motivation.
“It is all about giving. I want to give, to help, to save and prevent others from ending up where I did.”
Maria’s life started in humble, yet secure surroundings. She grew up in a small rural village where everyone knew everyone, and trust came easily. When she was fifteen, Maria and several members of her family immigrated to the United States. Soon after, she met a woman who offered her a job cleaning house for an elderly couple. Trusting the woman, Maria eagerly agreed. However, nothing happened for a while and Maria thought the woman forgot. When the woman finally returned and approached Maria again, everything happened quickly. Too quickly. Maria wanted to tell her family, but the woman told her to get in the car if she still wanted to work. She insisted there was no time for anything else—this job had to be qui