On my seventh birthday,
my mom gave me a book filled with blank pages.
That was the year I began to draw and write.
That was the year I finally made a friend in school, the year I finally found joy. I filled up the pages of my book quickly, and it was completely full by the time I turned eight.
That year, mom took me with her to buy a new book,
and I kept it in my backpack with my old one. That year, I made another friend and learned what happiness truly felt like.
Every year after that,
mom bought me a new book of blank pages, so I could fill them with life.
But one year,
my friends left me alone at school, and my mom forgot my birthday, and I couldn't remember what it felt like to be happy.
That was the year I stopped writing and drawing,
because there was no point. That was the first year my pages remained blank.
That was the year I fell in the lake,
and my backpack filled with my old books, my glimpses of life, sank to the bottom. That was the year I left my mom and my so-called friends and my school.
That was the year
I went to visit my old books and their colorful pages and decided to stay.