A first time for Everything

If you live for years with bolters and escape artists, along with a slew of dead bolts, padlocks and safety chains,  it can be difficult to break the  panic habit.

I hear the click of the front door and make a dash for it.  I miss him by a second and scramble out into the garden, dressing gown aflap.  He shuts the garden gate on me as I arrive and takes two steps out into the road as I yell and slip through the white picket.  He turns to blink at me as my hands travel around his shoulders suddenly very close to his throat, “wot?”  I search for my calm tone as the fabric gapes at my neckline, exposed.
“I need you  to come back inside ……where you’ll be safe.”
“I am safe.  I’m waitin for the bus.”
“Oh…….well wait with me…….inside.”
“It’s o.k. mom.”  I can almost see his halo of innocence, his sincerity,  “I wasn’t gonna run away or anything…….why would I?”

I recall a thousand different reasons and even more occasions, the millions of metres that I have chased my children all over San Jose but for now I’ll just focus on this one.

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