I was a 34 year old brilliant pianist when I lost my sight due to a terrible accident. I had just begun earning fame and name for my talent which had been polished and honed through years and years of hard work, efforts and patience.
It was all thrown away because a drunk person got behind the wheel. I turned very bitter and miserable after that. I barely ate, I was a cranky gentleman and the only one who gave me solace was my dog.
Her name was Oakley. She was a golden retriever and would often comfort me when sobs would wrack my body on an endlessly dark day, when time would stretch on into an eternity.
A year later, I heard music. Someone was thumping the keys on the piano, but there was no lilt and no tune to the music. It was just a mindless thumping and I slowly but surely, recognised each key and each note.
I made my way to the piano and heard Oakley’s excited bark and the thump of her paws as she banged them again and again on the piano. Maybe she felt that since I had been happy when I had been playing, I would be happy if she played for me.
I pushed her off the stool and sat down on it myself. I tried playing a tune, but to no avail. I couldn’t find the right keys and try as I might, positioning my fingers didn’t help.
I gave a groan of frustration as I hugged Oakley to me and cried. In her desperation to rid me of my anxiety, she started pawing the keys again. I felt calm and at peace as I let the notes wash over me like waves. She played for me every afternoon. After a while, I started holding her paw to understand where each key was.
That’s the way I learnt to play again. By remembering the position of each key and each note, by holding Oakley’s paw as she led me through the dark, I learnt to play and to live. I pay homage to the dog. She gave me a reason to live for once more
Today they call me -The Blind That Can See, because I am a privileged man that saw a way to get back his life, his music and his passion even when he was severely handicapped.