Abuse is not a new thing for Nadia. Throughout her childhood, she was sexually abused to pay for her mother's addiction to drugs. One day, her mom simply left her on the side of the highway at the age of 8, and her grandparents were awarded custody over her. Since then, Nadia has struggled with insecurities, depression and abuse. Now a young mother, Nadia is faced with adult problems while struggling to keep a free spirit.
The gang parades through Walmart on a late night shopping trip. Though they are going through a hard time as a family, they joke around as much as possible and try to keep an optomistic view of the future.
A gentle kiss was the only thing that calmed Aven down the night after Nadia pressed charges against her ex-boyfriend. Aven had been restless since the incident and Nadia can tell that he feels the stress. Her and her ex-boyfriend planned for a baby, but the abuse continued through her pregnancy. "Once he drove so fast and slammed on the brakes, before I could put on my seatbelt, and my stomach [at eight months] was bruised and I couldn't feel Aven move anymore," she said. "I thought I had lost him."
Nadia dances next to her dad's car while waiting for a police officer to escort her to ex-boyfriend's home. Dance has always been a passion for Nadia. She is traditionally trained in dance and slowly stopped dancing under her abusive relationship.
After being escorted by a police officer, Nadia is able to finally collect all of her belongings from her ex-boyfriend's house. She is moving back in with her grandparents as she prepares to go to court. This isn't the first time she has called the cops on him, over their two year relationship, he would physically and verbally abuse her. This is the first time she is pressing charges against him especially after his family watched Christopher strangle her and offered no aid. "His mom just watched and her son strangled me," she said, "and he did it in front of our own son."
Nadia embraces her grandma after being called and harassed non-stop from her ex-boyfriend's friends that urged her to drop the charges against Chris. The night before he tried to strangle Nadia after an argument that broke out between them. "I thought he was going to kill me," she said.
As part of her morning routine, Nadia paints eyeliner across her eyelids. She says she had to always put on a face during the abuse with her ex-boyfriend, to prove that she was okay and nothing was wrong.
"Nadia, you need to know how to defend yourself," said her dad as he handed her the gun. Uncertain, Nadia pointed the gun and fired only one shot into their backyard, closing her eyes the entire time.
While looking through a drawer for mail, Nadia's dad pulls out a photo of her while she was in ROTC in high school. The photo was taken before she dropped out. "I wanted to dance," she said, "so I dropped out and went to dance school instead."
Aven is restless and wouldn't stop crying in the car, so Nadia jumped in the back seat and held him the rest of the drive home.
Nadia looks at her reflection of the magic mirror as her dad holds it up and jokes with her. The toy aisle is where most of shopping trips are spent. "My dad is my best friend, I tell him everything," she said. "He's more like an older brother than a dad." Nadia plans to get her life figured out, go back to school, and provide a better life for Aven.