The Nightmares had been Erased.....Until The Call Came Late One Night

Part 17 of the Judy Tomaini Rock Series

 

The time went by too fast... 1 year turned into 2, and then 3. Louise never once called, or ask about Mickey. The family had settled into a daily routine, and were the perfect family. More than Jeanie or Al could have hoped for. Mickey was so happy with the new family, as he was getting the attention he never had before. The 3 years, had erased the nightmares, and fears that had haunted him that first year. He was now a normal, healthy, much loved little boy.

 

The call came late one night, which usually caused a racing heart, because at night it was an emergency of some sort. Louise was telling Al, she was married now, and wanted her child back. Even though Al protested, and had another Italian confrontation with her, she said she would be there in the morning, so have him, and his belongings ready to go. Jeanie cried all night. Three years is a long time. And it would be like he died, or dropped off the face of the earth. When she arrived early the next morning, it was heart breaking for Jeanie and Al. Louise was quite cool. When Al packed the trunk of her car full of his things, and the overflow into the back seat, she asked him, "is that all"??? It was a far cry from what she had left him with.

 

Jeanie and Al died a little that day. Judy had to be taken to a doctor, as she wouldn't eat, and cried nonstop for days. She was finally sedated to calm her. Her nightmares, began at that time. She was very unstable, for years after he was taken away. And the bears under the bed, were replaced by people killing her little brother. She saw the big heavy woman taking him away, and him screaming and reaching, for his Mama and Daddy. And she was too young to ever understand, why he was taken, and since they never heard from Louise after that, Judy just thought the worst, that she had killed him. Children's minds, are very prone to imagination at that age, and the nightmares continued. And grew into night terrors, that never left her. She grew to be reclusive, and never again trusted any of the extended family, on her Fathers side of the family. Al poured himself into work and tried to block out the pain, of losing his son from years before, and the one he just lost. Jeanie on the other hand, just did a lot of sewing, and suffered in silence. Mickey, was only spoken of by Judy. And then Jeanie would tell her, he was just living somewhere else, and had to stay where he was. It was a very hard thing, to explain to a 4 year old child, who was afraid everyday, that she would be stolen away too.

 

The following couple of years were hard ones on Judy, and the nights were still very hard, for her to make it through. And soon, she would be starting school. That was a real test of faith, as she was never away from Jeanie, for even an hour, since she was born. The insecurity, and fear of being taken away, grew worse every day. She didn't want anyone but Jeanie and Al to touch her, and if a stranger even brushed against her, when she would be shopping with Jeanie, it would bring on a major panic attack, and she would be reduced to tears. The doctor couldn't offer any help, as the medication, could only be used for a short time. So he told them, love and caring parents that they were, it could only be given time to heal. He didn't tell them, that the time would possibly be endless.

 

School was a real challenge for her. She was a very smart child, and well at the head of her class. After the first week of fear, she settled in to the routine. But still never wanted to be touched, or to be too close to anyone. Like she built walls around her, when ever she would start to open up to anyone. Then retreat back into her self. Adults never know the mental damage they can do to children, during the young learning years. Their minds are like little sponges, soaking up information, they may not need till many years later. And the bad along with the good, is put in storage. Only to be dredged up, years down the road. In the manifestation of something else.

 

That first year of school, evened out and she made all good grades. Might have been because, she had already learned to read, and count, and the other little things, that were taught in the first grade. Jeanie would continue teaching her, like she had during jumps from one town to the other. And make a point, of telling her about the different towns and states they were in, or traveled through. When the school days would cut the season short, there wasn't much traveling, only on vacations. They would go to Colorado, where Jeanie's father lived, with one of the many "grandmothers" Judy had over the years. The trips to Indiana were much more fun for her, as there were many cousins, and things to do. Her all time favorites, were her Uncle Don's kids, and they were Jeanie's favorites too. She and Don had been very close growing up, and it continued, till his death many years later... His wife Bea, had died a very early death, leaving Don to raise his three children alone. Ruthann, was always such a sweet girl, and always eager to please. Gene, was the quiet one like his Dad, and in later years looked like him too. Now Steve, he was the wild child, like Judy in later years. Always in trouble over something. Partners in crime.

 

The New Jersey relatives, were a different story. They were real close to New York City, and the era of the mob was strong. Al's father was a Don in Italy, and it came with him when he moved to Jersey. Several of Al's brothers, were following in the fathers foot steps. And their sons after them. Al was the different one. In stature, and in morals. He was a giver not a taker, and would never intentionally hurt, anyone or anything, so that is part of the reason, to relocate to Florida years earlier. And was building his families future, on the banks of the Alafia River, in what would become known as Showtown USA...

 

2004 Judy Tomaini Rock, All Rights Reserved

Published with the permission of Judy Tomaini Rock

 

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