When we’re younger, we think we know everything. We’re ready to take on the world and have no idea how unfair or ugly it is. We see the future as a blank canvas and fill it carefully with the watercolors of our dreams and expectations. Tracing with deliberate strokes the path that we will take, the people we will meet, the person we hope to become.
Reality, though, has a huge painter’s brush with black permanent paint. Waiting to just cover up those beautiful colors with darkness and dread. Clumsy, huge strokes that take all those beautiful colors away. Never to return.
As we grow older, we learn how naïve we once were. Some of us, take the chance to learn to be stronger. We grab our paintbrushes, wait for the black paint to dry and start right on over it. Sometimes, reality just keeps painting over our renewed landscapes. Over and over and over again.
It takes practice. It takes age. It takes perseverance and strength to keep going. Some of us falter. Some of us have canvases full of black with very few of the original watercolors and even fewer new colorful paintings above the black.
Others? Make black their thing. They make beautiful scenes, using the black to make their pictures shine brighter than ever.
Others? Never give up. Their black being painted over constantly. Filling the darkness with light constantly. Never faltering, never giving up, never resting.
All of these options, though? They all mean a lifetime of pain or fighting or hardships or darkness.
Some people seem to have SO MUCH of their original watercolors still shining through. Some days, those of us with black canvases can get very disappointed. We can start to find it easier to just let the black take over and give up. Who wants to correct a ruined painting over and over and over again? Especially when there are some that seem to have SO little black showing that it even seems to make the painting prettier. Not smaller, not ugly, not darker. Prettier.
Meanwhile, our canvas seems to be covered in black. With very little white shining through. Who can enjoy the pretty watercolors remaining in the white, when there is SO much black paint to make over? It’s exhausting. It’s deflating. It’s heartbreaking. It’s just unfair.