Black... it was like a pitch black paint coated my already painted canvas. The myriad of colors that I've painted for my lifetime on this canvas called life. All of it corroded in black.
They say when you mix all the colors in the world it would turn black. If this is a result of multiple colors, why doesn't it bring radiance but instead delivers a feeling of loss and hopelessness
Even a lifetime of hard work seemed feeble to this coat of darkness. It took away the life I built up and most importantly, it took away something precious.
-9 years ago-
The flickering and flashing of cameras followed me wherever I went. The white lights emitted by these cameras might seem bothersome to others, as for me, it was my peace. To be able to show this world the pieces I poured blood, sweat, and tears into.
It felt so exhilarating. To someone like me, this was the dream.
[TV: Miss Hana Sato reportedly broke the record for the most international art awards received for a painter under 30. This record was previously held by...]
The many awards I've garnered throughout my 6 years of painting surrounded by these diversely colorful works of mine made me eager to achieve more.
As someone young, I had the most materialistic notion of wanting to conquer the world. Such idealism resonated within my younger self. An idealism I now do not know of.
Of course, being in the spotlight had its downs even for someone like me. The numerous backlash and disapproval from others made this otherwise beautiful place a suffocating one.
But what stood out from these was something I received in the mailbox of my apartment a few months later. It came in the form of a fan mail from an unknown sender.
It was the first time I received a death threat.
Although it was disheartening, it didn't take long for me to forget. I continued to paint with my 24 palette and trusty brush as the sounds of each stroke melodically filled my room.
Exactly a month later, I received a similar letter from again an unknown sender. It was pretty much the same threat with even nastier words. I threw it away and didn't think much of it again.
The third time exactly a month later was when it got to me. This time, my address was written on it. I began to develop paranoia as it kept happening over and over.
Receiving letter after letter from this unknown sender wore me down but I kept reading. Maybe it was the ignorant positivity and stubborn nature I had back then that made me continue reading these letters hoping that the sender would one day praise my work.
It kept eating at me even as I stroked my brush tirelessly on the canvas. Painting out of paranoia along with the sleep deprivation brought by it slowly eroded the multitude of colors around me.
"Who's there!?" At nights, I shouted these words. I was like a kid scared of closed lights.
We moved from house to house and after a year, the letters stopped coming. I was finally back at peace, but along with the disappearance of these letters came the disappearance of my sight.
My already hazy perception of color which I initially thought was temporary lasted. It lasted until the faint colors blackened completely.
"Why isn't she painting anymore?"
"I heard she's turned blind."
"At only 24? Poor girl, she had so much ahead of her."
It was the same lines again and again, I don't need your pity. I've received enough from myself and my parents. Just leave me alone.
Many times I grasped the brush in my hands. Endlessly I painted and showed them to others but none turned out well.
What was I even thinking? Painting blindly as if I lived in a world of fairy tales. I thought too highly of myself.
I felt myself slowly being consumed by these dark flames. Flames, set not to ignite but to take and eat away.
I was sent to my parents since a blind person needed someone to take care of her. I felt so helpless as my mom held my hand everywhere I went.
Her warm words of affection intoxicated my fragile heart. This broken heart of mine, I wonder if it'll still mend. At night, I lock myself up in my room.
I couldn't even remember the color of this room of mine. Was it pink? Red? I don't know. Maybe I was a boring high-schooler and it was just white?
Either way, I'll never be able to see it for myself. I Continually lost hope and although I couldn't make sure, I believe it was evident on my face. The face of a being who has lost everything.
"Hana, this is mom. I cooked you your favorite food."
I never answered her knocks even if I knew she meant well, it's just, "It hurts, my heart hurts."
My heart wrenched whenever I heard your kind voice. Even dad was so kind to me.
My heart constantly broke from their compassion. I suffocated from their love and so I developed a habit of sneaking out of home using my cane to guide me. After less than a year of training, I got used to walking with my cane.
Everyday I would go out to get away from my love-filled home. I felt unworthy of it and until now I still do. How does one even look up after falling this low?
The overconfidence of the young is fueled by their unknowing minds. As an adult, I wouldn't say I've grown smarter considering the fact that I'm a blind woman sitting out on a park bench while drinking in broad daylight, but I'm definitely more realistic.
Eyes that can't perceive light, what use are they? Is this supposed to be divine comedy by the heavens? Or divine punishment for ignorantly desiring world conquest.
Nevertheless, I grip this empty life of mine. For even I desire a colorful ending to this black-stained tale.