i stripped myself of my day old clothes. i turned the knob labelled “hot” to the left. i stepped in once the water was heated. my feet shuffled beneath the hot, liquid medicine, allowing it to run down my body. as the hardships of the day flowed back to me, my mind pervaded with thoughts that carried such a great deal of capacity, my brain felt as though it was beating against my skull. like it was trapped and desperate to escape. my heart’s beat picked up speed as well as my breath. the thick steam made it more difficult to breathe. i inhaled in a way that would make you question if i were a relapsing cigarette addict. when i exhaled, my body felt slightly less tense and my mind a little less filled. in attempt to seek more solace, i turned towards the source of relief. i lifted my hands to my face. as the slightly wrinkled pad of my fingers dragged down my features, the pressure seem to subside. my skin displayed a bright red. almost as if a new layer of skin had been revealed. the piercing water trailed to my feet and down the drain. and so did the doubt, the worry, and the stress. and in that moment, i felt okay.