By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
Seated around the table in the parent center at Lassen, the women share nostalgic stories.
"I haven't seen my family in eight years," Mari says. "For me, this is my second family. I decided to make my own family."
Mari says the first time she crossed, the coyote left her and her husband in the desert in the middle of June. They walked for more than 12 hours without stopping, and Mari lost her baby. Mari says the difficulties she had getting here are the reason she doesn't go back.
Most of the women agree they had no idea how difficult it would be to get here. They also agree that they will always consider themselves Mexican -- even if they never leave the United States. For all, being in this group has been an awakening.
"It's like going into a dark room and lighting candles," Angelina Lopez says. "We are learning to be ourselves and not hide."
Estrada sits at the head of the table and surveys the room.
"Are you saying you have a voice now?" She asks.
From the back of the room, one of the older women speaks up.
"We're not hens anymore," she says. "We can be eagles."