I called him Baylee, a name that seemed both whimsical and human. That night, I set up Baylee's crate beside my bed. His first night away from his mom made Baylee whimper. In the dark, I sat beside his crate and sang him the lullaby my mother had sung to me as a little girl. At the sound of my voice, Baylee curled up on the towel inside the crate and fell asleep.
That was nine years ago. Baylee didn't last long in the crate. He's more a get-up-on-your-bed kind of guy. We're tight like that; we started doing everything together. Because of Baylee's sense of humor I began to laugh again. I learned to reconnect to the present moment, and hold onto that connection. I learned to engage in something outside the depression in my mind, and to allow that focus on something fun to anchor my emotions and gently ease me back into truly living. I learned to open myself to feeling love in a way I never had before. I learned, too, that the simple act of seeking, allowing and accessing joy can change your perspective of the world, yourself, your experiences and even your life.