Dillon had been dumped and felt worthless.
And he kept making mistakes at his job. He surfed Instagram for a few hours each night after he watched a couple hours of TV. He found himself searching out those movies he knew had a topless scene or two. He wasn't doing well. But honestly, his girlfriend was the only thing that was good in his life and he had been holding onto her so tightly because he couldn't get the rest of his life together. It was all just too daunting.
His girlfriend dumped him for some dude who had his own company and had like 20k followers. And who always dressed really well.
As he went to bed he saw his sleeping meds. He took a second look at them and paused. What if he took all of them? Could he make this all better by sleeping forever? This wasn't the first time he had thought of this. If ever there was a day. His face became stone with resolution.
He usually took a shower in the mornings but tonight he took a long hot shower. He put on his favorite silk boxers and favorite band T-shirt. He grabbed a big glass of water. He sat on the side of his bed and started with three pills, followed by water. Then four. Then five or six at a time. Until the bottle was empty. He shot one last big gulp of water, tucked himself in neatly, and laid his head on his pillow.
His eyes grew moist as he looked at his ceiling. His last thought was that he was losing something vast. And then he fell asleep.
He had a dream that his dad, who had died a few years ago, was showing him an old, beat up car he wanted to fix up. The tires were flat. The panels were rusted. But his dad said with pride, "It'll be a beauty some day."
"But dad," Dillon said in his dream, "That's so much work!"
His dad nodded and said, "One step at a time. We'll get the wheels done first. Then tune up the engine. Then it will at least run. Then we can work on the panels to make it more streamline."
His dad looked down at him. Dillon realized he was just a little kid looking way up at his dad. "Yep you and me. We're gonna make it beautiful, big guy. One step at a time. Each step makes it run a little better."
Dillon woke up. And wait-- he was still alive! He looked around him to see how that was possible. He finally looked over the edge of his bed and saw he had thrown up all of the pills, practically undissolved.
That morning he started by ironing his shirt. He would start with that. He would show up to work, even if he was already a little late, with an ironed collar.
He told himself, "One step at a time. Each little step makes us run a little smoother."
If you feel daunted by life, remember that every little step you take makes life run a little smoother. One step at a time. Start with one step.
Raw Spoon, 2-17-21