‘This Is Us’ Recap: Deja’s Mom Leaves Her to Live With Randall and Beth

THIS IS US Episode 217
THIS IS US -- "This Big, Amazing, Beautiful Life" Ron Batzdorff/NBC

This Is Us filled in the blanks of Deja’s backstory during the Tuesday, March 6, episode, titled “This Big, Amazing, Beautiful Life.” Read on to see what you missed.

What Would I Do Without You?

We finally got to see Deja’s story in full, from the moment she was born to the present day. Deja’s mother Shauna had her when she was 16. Her grandmother tried to keep her in check, but when she died, Shauna had trouble taking responsibility for Deja.

On Shauna’s birthday, Deja decided to cook her a special meal but ended up cutting her hand on a can. She went to the hospital, and there, she first met Linda from child services. Deja was put into foster care and lived with an abusive man for a while. He hit her and her foster sister, so Deja reported him to Linda. Deja’s foster sister warned her that they would be separated and she was in for a long bout of hopping from home to home.

Deja went back to live with her mother when she got out of rehab, and Shauna’s boyfriend, who she met in rehab, moved in with them. The police arrested Shauna after they found a gun in her car, which belonged to her boyfriend. That’s when Deja was taken to live with Randall (Sterling K. Brown) and Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson).

When Deja left the Pearsons’ home to live with her mother again, Shauna vowed to do things right, but she again slipped up when she used the money she and Deja had saved to pay her ex’s bail. As a result, Deja and Shauna were evicted and forced to live in their car.

The Pearsons invited them to stay at their house, and Shauna was surprised to see Deja acting like a kid with their family. At the end of the episode, Randall found Shauna leaving the house as she told him, “I gotta go, and I can’t take her with me.”

This Is Us airs on NBC Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET.

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