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Blossom's Magic: How My Cat Helped Me Conquer Depression

Many in the NMO community can relate to the feeling of not being understood by others around you. I isolated myself from the world for a while, it’s been a year now. I had no social life, I barely went to in-person classes for my course and I had no interest in doing things a normal 21-year-old would do. I went through a phase a few months ago, from December to February. It was probably the worst depression phase I’ve been through for a while, it felt like I was trapped.

All I did was feel sadness, emptiness, anger and anxiety. No matter what I did, nothing would help.

There could be so many reasons for it. My 20s being snatched away from me because of this stupid disease, the way I look, the fact I may have to pick between my health or having children in the future. So many things. But I couldn’t find a specific culprit of my depression.

What was wrong?

This began frustrating people around me because I wasn’t acting right and no one could understand why. But in all honesty I couldn’t understand either. If I knew what was wrong, I wouldn’t have let it get as bad as it did. I tried different things: reading books, going on walks and drives, applying to different jobs and a higher dose of anti-depressants.

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I was still stuck in an awful cycle of constant mental pain and it was taking a toll on me physically. I gained more weight, I couldn’t sleep at night and couldn’t stay awake through the day.

A depression loop

Let me give you a little insight to how my days went. My routine used to be a mess when I was depressed. I would stay up all night, unable to sleep, and it wasn't unusual for me to finally drift off around 7 AM. My eating habits were just as bad; I constantly turned to unhealthy food, relying on junk to get me through the day. I would wake up in the evenings, groggy and disoriented, feeling like I'd wasted another day.

This cycle of late nights and poor nutrition only made my depression worse, trapping me in a loop that felt impossible to break.

Then I decided to get a kitten.

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Emotional support

I called her Blossom, after the cherry blossom tree. I didn’t know how much of an impact pets have on our daily life until I got her. Kittens need constant attention, and have to be fed every few hours. It’s a new environment for them and I couldn’t have stuck to my old routine, where I isolated myself from everyone and stayed in bed all day.

I had to do something, and to afford her necessities, I had to try harder to get a job.

My cat played a crucial role in pulling me out of my depression. Every morning, without fail, she'd nudge me awake, demanding my attention. She’s not affectionate, but she has her ways to show she cares. Her routine became my routine. Feeding her, playing with her, and watching her curiosity and playful antics brought a spark of joy back into my life.

The responsibility of caring for her gave me a sense of purpose and a reason to get out of bed, even when it felt impossible.

Companionship

Slowly, I started to look forward to our mornings together, her presence comforting and grounding me. The companionship she offered helped me find the motivation to start taking better care of myself, one small step at a time. I finally got a stable job and was able to afford all her necessities myself. Along with that it made me have a better routine with a healthy sleeping pattern.

I’m not at my lowest point in my life anymore, but i’m certainly not at the best. However, my wee Blossom has helped me get out of the cycle I was in.

Treatment results and side effects can vary from person to person. This treatment information is not meant to replace professional medical advice. Talk to your doctor about what to expect before starting and while taking any treatment.
This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Neuromyelitis-Optica.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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