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  • Tommy can't sleep.
    because of the Bad Guys.

    he's seven right now. first grade.
    In first grade you watch kids explode - reading, for most, really clicks --
    young brains growing -- neurons firing -- synapses synaps-ing --
    their imaginations are on fire.
    Fourth of July fireworks, unceasing.
    Especially Tommy's, Tommy Tuna's imagination and story-telling
    ...he never shuts down. His imaginings are as gigantic as the rest of Himself.
    he's always spinning stories.
    and lately,

    lately? His stories are spinning him.
    He worries. And obsesses. And has nightmares, lots.
    He thumps down from the top bunk, pounding into my room and under my covers. shaking.
    sometimes he talks about it, other times he shudders into me, ramming his head into my collarbone, tunneling his way back inside.
    to hide. from
    Bad Guys. Burglars. Bad men.
    Max went through this; it's worse with Tom.
    He's unraveling in front of me --
    a thick wool sweater unraveling into yarn, puddling on the floor.

    And I'm divorcing their dad. Moved out. Have my own place.
    stress. change. uncertainty. no control.

    Dunno if divorce has any footing, but Tommy's afraid all the time now.
    The Bad Guys are multiplying. I can't fight them.

    He can't be alone. He's afraid. He needs to be in the same room with me.
    And now he has to be close to me, preferably on or next to me.
    So that part of him is touching me, as much of him as he can wriggle into.
    I'm Momma. I'm home base.
    Bad guys can't get you on home base.

    Sometimes I hate having Tommy glued to me.
    Taking a shower. Using the toilet. Trying to write.

    I keep boxing up my need for solitude though.
    Because, right now?
    My Tommy needs Home Base.
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