Tilly. My dog. My baby. My world. My only saviour some times.
You would never think by looking at an animal that they could save you in many different forms.
And I’m sure many others have been saved by their canine companion.
Here’s Tillys story, and I suppose mine too.
It’s 2019, I’m 22 and my best friend is my 1 and a half year old golden retriever. The sun shines just about every day with her by my side.
But to rewind to a few years ago, my life looked very different.
I plummeted into a deep, dark hole that I did not see any exit from. No light, no map, and no hope.
That year marked the beginning of the most horrendous period of my life.
Depression consumed me.
I was numb, hollow, a nothing.
I barely got out of bed, never mind leaving the house.
I didn’t talk to anyone, I cried every day, all day. And listened to sad music (which I do not recommend).
I was disappearing into this illness.
Nothing would help me, until I met Tilly.
I mentioned getting a dog to my parents, and we agreed that although it would be a lot of work, a dog would act as a friend for me (as I had none).
So we went on a quest for a puppy.
Bingo, we got the last of a batch of 12.
For the first time in months I was actually excited about something.
When we visited Tilly and the puppies, it’s as if I had stepped into a bubble. Which I left behind when we left them. A joyful, light bubble. I didn’t feel the depression suffocating me just as tightly. And when we took Tilly home, I could feel some of that bubble come home with me.
It was magical.
I actually had something to wake up to every day. I felt warm and fuzzy going downstairs in the morning to see her. And she greets me with a smile and cuddles every time I see her.
As she grew, I felt my personality grow as well. She has helped me with so many different aspects.
She has helped me talk to more people, there is always a conversation when Tilly is around!
She has given me a friend, someone to talk to. She is such a fantastic listener - if I do say so myself.
Most importantly, for me, Tilly has given me a reason to get up in the morning. She has given me purpose in my life. Finally I have someone who wants to be with me, who wants to see me and who remembers I exist. Dogs give you unconditional love and it’s the most wonderful feeling.
Yes, I still live with depression. It keeps me awake at night and tortures me every day. But my dog has made it more bearable to live on this silly planet. And in times of danger, she has given me a reason to stop, think, and have another day of life.
They will never know how much they mean to us, or how much they help us every day.
But here’s to the dogs, thanks for being better friends than most humans are.