Going back

Today, for the first time since October 2017, I went back to the Planned Parenthood clinic that I used to manage in Glendale, Arizona. 

I was filled with mixed emotion; I felt sad, afraid, ashamed, happy, excited and hopeful. This time, I was on the other side of the yellow line that divides Planned Parenthood from the people praying on the sidewalk, this time, I was one of ‘them’. I stood with a microphone across the street and told my story as escorts tried to block us with colorful umbrellas and loud music – but I knew they heard me. I know, because I was one of them. 

I wanted so badly to walk into the clinic and tell my former co-workers that I was there for them. I wanted to tell them that I am not angry with them, and that I forgive them. That I did what I had to do for the safety of women, their families and their future. That I had to stand up for the truth, for the unborn and for women. I had to set an example for my kids and for my community. I wanted to tell them that the people on the outside praying really do care. 

I wanted to speak to the volunteers, to ask them to hear my side of the story or to read about it because I was just like them. I care for women and I want them to be safe. Most importantly, I was there to pray with the people on the sidewalk because their prayers worked. God wanted me there with them, I needed to show them how grateful I was for their prayers. 

Before I left, I walked past the driveway of my old clinic and I tried to talk to them. I asked them to Google my story, that I was once one of them, that I know what they’re going through. 

To come to the other side. 

I know some of them may be reading this… I want them to know there is help, you don’t have to work there. Reach out to me, reach out to Abby. 

And more than anything, I want them to know that I’ll be praying for you. 

– Mayra