Sarah Carmona knew she was going to be a star. She had the looks and the talent; all she needed was an opportunity. So she started hanging out with the right people, trying to break into the world of Hollywood.
She was just one of thousands of young women who dreamed of becoming great actresses. But the unexpected happened to Sarah: she got pregnant.
She was an aspiring starlet expecting a baby, and ended up working as a waitress in a downtown restaurant. All Sarah could think about during her pregnancy was giving birth and getting her figure back.
When she was 7 months pregnant, Sarah’s mother came to visit her. She had planned to give the baby up for adoption, but that unexpected visit changed things. The woman was thrilled to become a grandmother and eager to help her with everything.
«I’ll pay the rent,» her mother said «And I’ll give you an allowance, so you can devote yourself to caring for the baby….. Please, Sarah, don’t give up the little girl!».
Her mother’s sentimental pleas went in one ear and out the other, but her financial incentives were very convincing. Sarah agreed to stay with her daughter, but stipulated that she would stay in that city. She still wanted to be a star.
Two months later, Sarah gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Mia, after her grandmother. At first, it worked out well. Her mother was very generous and could even afford to pay for a nanny.
Sarah continued to attend auditions and parties, still looking for that big break, that magic moment. As the years went by, Mia grew up and Sarah was still not starting out professionally.
She didn’t act like a dedicated mother. Her daughter was just the golden goose that kept her grandmother’s money flowing, but that was as far as her interest went.
When Mia was four years old, her grandmother passed away and Sarah inherited some money. If she had managed it carefully, it would have lasted her for years. But she squandered it quickly.
One day, Mia was playing in the park with her friends and fell off the swing. When the little girl woke up, she was in the hospital and couldn’t feel her legs.
The little girl cried, calling for her mother, but her mother first wanted to know what had happened. The doctors told her that her daughter had a serious spinal injury and that, without surgery or rehabilitation, she would be in a wheelchair for the rest of her life.
«How much is that going to cost me?» asked Sara. When she heard the amount, her lips thinned and she said, «I’ll think about it.»
No one at the hospital ever saw Sarah again. Since she had given them a false address, they couldn’t find her either. A few days later, the hospital received a notarized statement.
Sarah was giving Mia up for adoption and declining all responsibility. Dr. Anna Jaramillo was the child’s pediatrician and broke the news to her.
«My mommy’s not coming back?» little Mia asked, surprised. «Is it because I’m all hurt? Please tell her I’ll recover, I will!». As she held the little girl, who was sobbing desperately, Anna swore she would do anything to help her.
The next few years were very hard for Mia, but Anna stood by her side. Mia begged to take her in and Anna came to love the sweet little girl as if she were her own.
Mia underwent several surgical procedures as she grew up. After each operation, she went through painful rehabilitation sessions, but it was all worth it. Gradually, she learned to walk again.
By the time she was a senior in high school, Mia could dance and even run. Anna got married and managed to adopt the girl, who eventually had a loving family.
Mia went to college and graduated from law school with top grades. To celebrate, she decided to take her parents out to dinner at one of the best restaurants in town.
The brand new lawyer had made a reservation, and when she and her parents got out of their limo, a homeless woman accosted them, neither of them could recognize her!
Sarah saw a pretty, glowing, long-legged girl in a designer dress get out of the limo. A lavishly dressed older couple followed her. This was a rich family, she thought, an easy target!
«Please,» the woman pleaded. «I’m so hungry.» She focused her attention on the woman. She had a sweet, compassionate face.
Sarah was right. Anna felt sorry for her and reached into her purse for money, but Mia stopped her with a gesture. She stared at the homeless woman, as if something came to her memory.
«Do I know you?» she asked. «Your face reminds me of my mother’s.»
The woman smiled.
«No, honey, I’m not your mother — a pretty, healthy girl like you? I had a daughter and she was in a wheelchair!».
«Yes, that was me,» Mia said calmly. «When you abandoned me I was in a wheelchair. And as you can see, I’ve recovered, thanks to my parents.»
«Please,» Sarah said, grabbing Mia’s arm. «Please, you can help me! You were lucky to be adopted by rich people, and that was because of me!».
«Thanks to you?» asked Mia. «Yes, I can thank you for one thing it would be for all the nights I cried, wondering why I didn’t have your love, and feeling I deserved to be abandoned. Here, mother, here is my thanks.»
Mia pulled out a $20 bill and placed it in Sarah’s hand, then walked into the restaurant with her real parents.