For 36-year-old Tracie and her children, the relief of a fresh start collides with the challenges of surviving as a single mother. Tracie says she left her husband in April after 19 years of physical and emotional abuse, and moved to Cuba, Missouri, a few months later to begin a new life with her sons, Timothy and Zackary. As Tracie makes sense of her new family dynamic, she must balance work and quality time with her children.
Between Tracie’s income as a part-time dishwasher and government assistance, the family has barely enough money for each month’s expenses. Shortly after paying September’s bills, Tracie found out she now earns too much to qualify for food stamps.
“I don’t know what to do,” Tracie said. “I try and I try.”
Though Tracie is optimistic about her future and the life she can build for her children, she still endures remnants of her soon-to-be ex-husband’s aggression.