Bipolar Living: Meet My Emotional Pet: Drake + 3 Psychological Reasons An Emotional Service Cat Can Help People with Bipolar Disorder
When my mom had to go pick me up from school in Florida during my sophomore year of college, shit was raw. I was in my first real psychotic episode spiral and was paranoid beyond belief. The toxic combination created a frightened and unstable child. The only semi-conscious thing other than the spurs of creative energy in the kitchen was that I wanted a cat. My psychiatrist at the time thought it could be beneficial.
He mentioned that there was research behind the emotional support animals offered psychiatric patients. My mom desperately looking for answers everywhere, ran around trying to find a black cat for me. The only issue was that during the October in Miami you couldn’t adopt/buy any black cats. So the solution was for my brother who was back in Panama to find a black cat.
That’s the story behind the yellow-eyed furball that is my constant shadow.
The name is a whole different story.
I combined two of my passions, my love for food and Drake the Canadian rapper. And then actually it ended up having a pretty special meaning. Also thinking of Canada and Drake the rapper being Canadian the whole thing just made me laugh and it clicked. So being the girl who thinks there’s a reason for everything and I do mean everything. It all came together perfectly.
The name was just a given – Drake Canadian Bacon.
I only really call him by his full name when I’m mad and he can tell he did something wrong, the dude freezes. So in my Colombian ways, just like when my mom says Andrea and not Andre, I know something is up when I call the sometimes annoying furball Drake Canadian Bacon, he knows something is wrong.
We have this special bond and even when I was still medicated my loving furball would often let my mom know when I was about to start having a panic attack. He sensed it. He still does. He lets me know when something is off or helps me calm down when I am anxious. His purring often soothes me when I’m itching with energy.
He also understands me and looks out for me. When I talk to someone on FaceTime and he can’t recognize the voice he won’t leave my side. When I argue with people he pees on their things. As upset as I can get in heat of the moment, I also smile because that just shows how deep our connection really goes.
I truly think that having an emotional pet can be such a beneficial part of your journey and a way to cope during tough times.
3 ways an emotional cat can help with bipolar disorder.
Drake wakes me up in the morning. Sometimes I forget to set my alarm and he knows and will start meowing loud while putting all his weight on me.
I honestly believe Drake calms my hypomanic and manic tendencies like he can sense that I am moving in a fast-paced manner. His presence really does soothe me and balance me out.
It was like we were meant to be from the start. He was always meant to be mine.
- Research shows that pets can profoundly alter the biochemistry of our brains, in a University of Missouri study, scientist found that petting dogs can spike our serotonin level.
- They offer us a sense of comfort and this according to research actually sends us a sense of emotional and positive support and has proven to help patients with depression.
- Just like exercise can cause a release of neurochemicals our fun furry friends can also have the same effect on our brain. Our blood levels double, which slows down our heart rate and there for sending a very chill out calm vibe. AKA a natural form of dopamine.
I honestly don’t know what I would sometimes without Drake, when I can’t breathe because I am in a full-fledged panic attack, he somehow calms me down. It’s weird because I don’t sleep the same when he isn’t near me.
I do think he balances out my personality as well, we are very similar in the sense that I also think he has very energetic semi-manic tendencies. I think that sometimes when I let my guard up and start to get too serious about life, I think his manic side comes out as a way to pull me out of my own head and just remember to have some fun.
Do you have an emotional support animal or pet who helps you deal with your bipolar disorder? Do you feel like they’ve made a difference in your journey? Let me know in the comment section below or by taking a selfie of you and your furry friend and tagging it #followourpassionstyle #fopemotionalpets on Instagram!