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the kitchen drawer

You know that drawer in the kitchen? The one that everybody uses to store stuff. Stubby pencils and paper clips and gum wrappers and school papers and fast food ketchup packets, and old batteries and bread ties.

The drawer that gets so full, so fast. And you keep meaning to clean it out. In fact, you’re going to get to it this weekend.

The drawer that is helpful, but nobody would realize how much unless the drawer was no longer there. That exhausted, full, under-appreciated kitchen drawer.

Today, I told my boss that I felt like that drawer.

He cocked his head to one side and looked at me, lips more than slightly parted, the most quizzical look on his face. Kinda like the time my beautician, Eddie, tried this bandstand-looking bun of a hairstyle on me, and I had to go to work like that the next day. Like that, but different.

I waited quietly, wondering if he was about to empty my drawer of its contents and put a piece of pink paper in it.

Instead he half smiled and said, “It’s going to get better. I promise you…it will get better.”

I nodded. I knew he meant it. “Okay,” I said, “I just wanted you to know that.”

As I got up to leave, I glanced back at him - chair tilted, fingertips steepled and resting against his chin, staring out the window.

I knew at that moment he had left the office and was standing in his kitchen peering down into an open, junky, drawer.

I smiled. It’s going to get better.

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