This is 13th & Broadway in Wichita, KS. If you're from here, you know that this is no corner to stand on. Especially not with your young daughter.
Do you know why I'm standing here? I'm standing here because the last time I stood on this corner the woman in my arms was my friend. She was prostituting for dope. She had no shoes on. She was 75lbs thinner. Her eyes were wild. She was out of her mind. As I drove by, I saw the back of her and knew immediately who she was.
So I got out, I told her that she needed to come with me. She did not come but she hugged me, and that was something. For the next few weeks, I looked for her, always bringing clothes and food with me. Always leaving without even seeing her.
Until one day, I was buying McDonald's for a homeless man down the street from this intersection. As I sat in the drive thru, she walked right across my path. God walked her right across my literal path. She got in my car. I fed her. I prayed with her. I dropped her off at a hotel. She was not ready. And I could not make her be ready.
Weeks later she called me from treatment. She had been sexually assaulted again by a john and she had had enough. She called me to thank me. She thought no one out there still cared. She felt invisible. She said my kindness helped her remember who she really was, and who she really is....is a beautiful Puerto Rican queen who is one of the greatest poets I have ever known.
That woman is still sober today. So I brought my daughter Leila here. I told her:
"When you have a friend that needs your help, you go to the ends of the earth for them if it's to bring them to the light. No gesture is too small. No act of kindness meaningless. You are building a bridge for them to walk over. It takes a lot of stones. Do not give up. A lot of people didn't give up on your mom. And now I'm here with you on this corner. In freedom. You come from a warrior. You will be a warrior."❤🐶👑
Change is possible. Sometimes you just need a friend