This post is dedicated to my favourite animal in the entire world and that is my baby Harmony. Harmony is about fifteen years old and has been by my side since I was in elementary school (the later years). I believe having a companion whether it be a cat or even a rat is essential to dealing with mental illness. It shows you that you are not alone. Animals are usually very in tune with their owner’s feelings and Harmony is no different. When I would have depressions that lasted weeks, sometimes months, she would snuggle with me and just be with me and that is what I needed the most at the time – for someone to just BE with me.
Harmony is a Calico cat with a half black and half tan nose which I think is her most adorable feature. She is sassy beyond her years and I may have contributed to that having raised her during hormone surges in my early teens. She loves rubs but is sure to let you know with a sharp nip when she has had enough. She loves her cat nip but more than anything she loves cuddles. As a person with bipolar disorder who struggles with depression constantly these cuddles literally saved my life. When I was at my darkest, crying and tearing my hair out battling with the idea of killing myself, it was the thought of leaving Harmony behind that really put things into perspective for me.
She has laid with me during sixteen hour stretches where I could not leave my bed and wanted to hide from the world I was feeling so low. She never judges. She simply comforts. She rubs her little face on mine and I get the sense that things are not as dark as they seem. My life has meaning with Harmony and she gives me a reason to get up each morning. It is my responsibility to ensure she is fed and taken care of. I am her support system as much as she is mine.
She has also been there when I was manic and studying for hours on end with her little head propped against my laptop. She keeps me company and follows me around literally everywhere. If I leave the house for too long she greets me with extra affection as if she’s scared I’ll leave her again. I once had to leave her with my parents for three years while I went to University in a different city. When I came back admittedly she gave me the cold shoulder but within a week or two was back to her cuddly self. She is my baby and I will be so upset the day we have to part indefinitely (I know morbid) but more importantly she is my best friend.
Whether I am up or down, Harmony will always be there to keep me company or to comfort me. This I will be eternally grateful for and the fact that she saves my life literally everyday. She is my reason to keep living, to keep breathing. I wish she could read this and understand how much she has impacted my life but I think she knows on some level that she means the world to me – if all the kisses weren’t hint enough!