, 62 tweets, 16 min read Read on Twitter
Trump’s flippant demonization of immigrants is so dangerous. He tweets lies. Lies turn to truth. Truth to violence. Violence becomes policy. I want to, slowly, introduce you to a real immigrant I know. Nilda. An asylum seeker. A mother. A survivor. Follow me here start to finish.
She was born in Honduras.
This was her school.
This was her home.
This is her mother.
And her sister.
This was her favorite band (Aventura).
And her best friend, Bel.
When Nilda was 15, a relative came to visit.
This is where he tried to rape her.
In the next few years, Nilda started staying out late.
She and Bel would go out in La Zona Viva.
This is where Nilda learned she was pregnant. The father was happy at first, but then began to have doubts.
She endured beatings so bad she needed dental surgery.
But Nilda had made a promise to God.
This is where her baby was born.
This is Keyden.
They would go to the mall and look at things they couldn’t afford.
Keyden liked to ride the horses.
A few years ago, the gangs in La Ceiba got more violent.
Nilda’s neighbor was killed in front of her on this corner.
One day, two gang members were driving along the river.
The cops spotted them from the other direction.
And chased them into Nilda’s neighborhood.
A gang member held Nilda and Keyden hostage.
He threatened to kill them if she couldn’t keep Keyden quiet.
After the gang member escaped, they received a message.
Leave home or be killed.
So they left.
Up through Guatemala.
And into Aguascalientes, Mexico.
This is where their guide left them.
Nilda wrapped Keyden in a sweatshirt and tied him to her waist.
And held onto the outside of the train for 17 hours.
She didn’t sleep until they reached the border.
This is where they tried to cross.
But the water was too deep.
So this is where they entered the U.S.
And this is where they were arrested.
They waited on the ground for an hour. The officer wouldn’t let Nilda feed Keyden.
They were taken to the station at Eagle Pass. They spent the night in a cold room.
The next morning, the guards took Nilda away.

Without Keyden.
She begged and pleaded with the officer but it did no good. “This is what happens when you come to my country,” the officer said.
She spent a week in Val Verde Detention Center.
No one would tell her where Keyden was.
Then they transferred her to Maverick.
Then to South Texas.
She hasn’t seen Keyden in a month.
Next, they took her to the ICE office in New York City.
They told her she would see her son.
But instead they took her upstate.
To an ICE facility in Goshen.
Nilda began to lose hope.
After another two weeks, a bus took her into the city.
And stopped at 201 Varick Street.
She was taken to the 11th floor.
And there he was.
Keyden still gets scared whenever Nilda leaves. Even just to go to the bathroom.
This is the ankle monitor she has to wear.
While she waits to find out if they can stay. Her story has really just begun.
Visit whiletheywait.org to learn more about the community of over a million like Nilda who are now living in the US applying for legal status, including asylum, struggling to survive while they wait to find out if they’ll be allowed to stay.
The still images were drawn from the extraordinary video directed by @jakeschreier for the song "I Found You / Nilda's Story" by @ItsBennyBlanco, @CalvinHarris, & @Miguel. Please watch here:
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Scott Hechinger
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls (>4 tweets) are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!