You are stronger than you think
To some of you this blog post may sound silly or like 'crazy dog woman' but honestly I can not empathise enough the amount a dog can help you. Therefore I would like to share my story of how my dog 'Bronte' changed my life.
We got Bronte in 2010, when I had just turned 13 years old, this was about a year after I had been diagnosed. This was probably one of the hardest times of my life as I was having several seizures a day, therefore missing a lot of school and seeing friends. At this age my seizures caused me to feel too scared to leave the house alone, as I was worried I would have a seizure in public. So my parents thought it would be a good idea to get a dog, which was left to my responsibility to walk, to encourage me to get out the house alone and for company.
How she helped me - because I knew that Bronte needed to be walked daily she was my reason for being brave and getting out the house alone. Even if I did have seizure on a walk I would feel safe as I had Bronte by my side. To other people this may sound silly, but for me Bronte was my stepping stone to getting out alone, seeing friends, going back to school. She started to bring my confidence back.
When I was 14/15 I had to be home schooled due to being too ill with epilepsy, stopping me from attending school. This therefore meant my social life went hugely down hill compared to other children my age, leaving me feeling very alone. However Bronte would always be there, if I was getting fed up with home tutoring I would take Bronte on a walk or give her a hug. She made me feel as if I wasn't alone anymore even in my darkest times.
My advice to people who are going through a hard time with epilepsy or struggling with another condition is I know a dog is a huge commitment. But if you do have the time, money and other requirements for having a dog, I would strongly recommend it. As I know that Bronte changed my life for the better, she helped me grow and develop. Although she isn't a seizure alert dog, I always felt safer when she was by my side. I always know that If I am having a bad day or week, she will always be there and won't leave my side until I feel better. I honestly believe that I would not be where I am today If my family and I hadn't of got Bronte.
The bond that I have with Bronte and what other people can create with their dogs is indescribable. When you're at you lowest they give you the strength, a friend and you feel loved. Dogs are not just an animal they are family, as friend who can change your life and make you feel like you're not alone.
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