By Laila Alawa

Laila Alawa lives in Washington, DC, where she's discovered that writing is the best addiction to have. When she isn't making jewelry for her small business or redefining the narrative of Muslim American women, you can find her tweeting at a Starbucks with working wifi and outlets.

  1. It was in my faint reflection of the Claire's store window, breath misting the glass as I considered the previously-unattainable - strands of a glimmering customizable necklace on display, the promise of femininity and allure all wrapped up in an $8.99 deal - that I came to my decision. I had a few well-worn dollars in my purse, and I was ready to make a change to my identity. It was a meticulously made decision,…