No matter how I looked at it now, I lost. No matter my earlier winnings—I lost. Staring at the worn white and black cubes, I knew there was a decision that needed to be made. The longer I kept these, the greater chunks of my life were betted to fate.
I set the dice down. Blurred behind me were bottles of rich liquor that my fingers itched to obtain; to drown myself in numbness that didn’t require me to make these decisions. That was a fool’s mindset, and I ventured down that way for far too long. Meandering in a constant winding road, fluxing and flexing the same repeated thoughts; it was as harrowing as it was maddening.
It was equally torturous. The kind of torment that longed for me to claw my eyes for a smattering of relief. The cold wash that came with submerging myself into penniless thoughts, adrift to a sea that would keep me stagnantly afloat. I wanted to keep drifting forward towards land instead of burning my flesh from a sun of my conscious failures. My lips were parched, cracked, and chapped from merciless dehydration. This was not what I wanted for myself.
Despite that, my eyes longingly counted the bottles lined up as tears pinpricked the corners of them, bubbling my anxieties as they tumbled. Desperation hung over me and I swallowed hard to avoid giving in to whatever temptation seemed easiest at the given moment.
I hit rock bottom.
I realized that making wiser choices was mandatory if I desired any hope of growing. I was a mess; a brutal, pathetic mess of a man who hadn’t the right to call himself one. Again, my hand gripped the dice and stared at the pair of snake-eyes as I opened my palm. Like a snake, I wished to shed myself of my skin and let my newness come to light.
Hence why my head turned towards the trash bin, exactly where this pair belonged. Stepping off from the stool, I took the slow stride towards it, shaking the dice for one last time as their corners tickled my palm, my awareness of their existence as every memory associated with them flashed before my eyes.
Let the snake-eyes be and the numbers land where they fell. No longer did they add up to any personal value as they once did. They no longer impressed or gave me a power I thought I possessed. My vision was clouded with an exponentially distorted judgment. I retained a power I wasn’t even aware of. Being a father made me a better man, and if there was a way to reclaim that title or that power, I would do whatever it took to make it so.
And so, if this was my last time to finally toss my dice akin to throwing caution to the wind, I allowed my curiosity to peek at the results. Funny enough, I rolled a seven. For the first time, in a long time, I released a humored chuckle. Perhaps it was a sign of change.