Luis Fuentes (LF) and Jayne Fuentes (JF)
LF: Was it hard when you got out to get back on track?
JF: Nobody wants to hire a felon, so it took me two years to get the job I have today and I live paycheck to paycheck. If I don’t pay my fines, then I go to jail. Sometimes it was either buy food or pay the bill. It doesn’t matter how good I do, it’s always there. I can’t get ahead.
Last year, when I got sick with pneumonia and I was in a coma for six days, the doctors told you guys that they didn’t think I was going to make it. And when I got out of the hospital, I had missed a thirty dollar jail payment and the court wanted to put me in jail for it. How do you call to make a payment when you’re in a coma?
JF: Sometimes it’s too much. What kinds of sacrifices did you make to help me?
LF: You know, I was 21. I went without a lot of things that I wanted. Just by helping pay your fines, was giving you rides when you needed ‘em —
JF: Bought my work shoes, my work pants —
LF: Yup. You know, I knew that it would take one slip-up and you would go right back into doing what you were doing. And I wasn’t going to let that happen to you.
JF: Did you ever resent me?
LF: I did. For a while. But, I don’t know, I guess one day I learned to forgive you and, you’re my mom. I still needed you.
JF: My biggest worry for the future is that, ah, I’m going to end up back in jail.
LF: I wish you didn’t have to go through that just because you’re doing so good now. There’s a lot of times where you, you show me that you’re going to stay strong and I’m very proud of you. I’m actually probably more excited for you than you are for yourself.
JF: Why do you stick by me?
LF: ‘Cause I love you and I’ll always be there for you. And that’s the best part about it is, I know that I can rely on you, and now you know that you can rely on me. No matter what.