updated 05/09/2013 AT 5:00 PM ET
•originally published 05/10/2013 AT 10:00 AM ET
After years spent indoors together in close proximity, almost never being allowed outside the dilapidated house where they were held hostage, the three young women rescued in Cleveland on Monday are trying to find their separate ways back to a sense of normalcy outside of the public’s gaze.
Both Gina DeJesus and Amanda Berry returned home to joyous neighborhood welcomes on Wednesday. In Gina’s case, that included a backyard family gathering attended by relatives and the closest of family friends.
One of those friends, Lydia Esparra, tells PEOPLE: “Despite being skinny, she looked very healthy. She obviously doesn’t have a lot of skin color, ‘cause she’s been living in a house with no sun for nine years. But she looks amazing. Amazing.”
By day’s end, the family had erected blue plastic sheeting to shield the shaded backyard of the home on West 71st Street from view.