“We were getting on a bus in Reynosa when immigration officers asked us to present papers. We didn’t have any so we were taken to a perrera,” she says, referring to the holding cell she and her son were held in as a “dog pound.”

Then, Martinez says, her son fell seriously ill, developing a harsh cough and symptoms of flu. “His eyes were swollen, he had a cough and the flu. He wouldn’t eat and he wouldn’t drink.”

It also did not help that for the two weeks Martinez and her son were detained, they were forced to sleep on the cold hard floor “until I begged someone from immigration to find me a little mattress and they did.”

Looking back on the experience, Martinez says: “It’s a nightmare. I want a better life, but I won’t try again.”