Stream of consciousness: 

*What’s the light in the hall? A mere security blanket wrapping the kids in peace as they sleep. Does the light serve a functional purpose at 3am? Only to quiet the fears of a child awoken by a dream.  A stream of far of places, of monsters and dragons. The light anchors them back to reality. It reminds them of the here and now. It quietly declares to them that dreams are stories that stay in the mind, only to be released by those who dare reveal their secrets. 

*It happens in slow motion in my brain. My foot catches on the cord, the leg locks back, the food goes flying forward as I stretch to the pain to retrieve it to no avail. I go down. Slowly to my knees. Slowly to my arms. My belly hits, followed by my head. The world starts moving at regular speed, like a film that has glitched for a fraction of a second. I look around from my setting on the floor. The world is slightly canted, much like a snapshot of my life during this season. The food has flown off the plate, hitting the wall with gusto. The plate is missing, swallowed up by the darkness past which I can not see. The only sound is that of distant canned laughter coming from the television in the room down the hall, and the whirring white noise of the drier on the back porch. I take a quick mental assessment of my situation to see if I am hurt beyond my pride. I will be bruised, but that is nothing new. Beyond that, I think I am whole. 

*The television is on, but it is more of a distraction. I couldn’t tell you what is on, nor could I name the channel on which it has landed. It’s just noise. I need the noise. It helps the memories, anger, regret, and sadness stay at bay. It buries the madness below the surface, not allowing its voice to be heard. Noise. It covers me in a blanket of safety, keeping the unwanted away for a spell.

*The lady turns around and glares at me. I am confused, even a bit frightened maybe. Her demeanor does not fit the situation, and my body immediately senses the fracture in the atmosphere. I stop placing my items on the conveyor belt, but they continue to move forward, guided by an invisible electrical force. What happens next is like a bad dream coming to a head. …..

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