Dear Dolly,

Hello my beautiful little girl. I love you so much.
I remember on my hardest days in Hospital, I would look at your little pink spotty collar hanging from a photo frame on my desk and I'd find some hope. On the days when I didn't have much faith in my recovery, your collar and the thought of you gave me some faith. Sometimes, when the days were dark and my tunnel had no light; I would look at that collar and think 'it might never happen but it's comforting to dream about it.' Even as the professionals began discussing my discharge from hospital, there was always something in the back of my mind telling me it wouldn't actually happen; something was bound to go wrong. I became convinced that someone like me didn't deserve the future I dreamt about. 
And then it happened! I was discharged from hospital and after weeks of scanning through every single advert on a gazillion pets for sale websites;I found you. There were a few adverts that I made enquiries on but some were already sold or there was some other complication. I just wasn't meant to have them. Then I saw your advert, Dolly. It was a lady called Amanda who was selling you, and your sister who was (as were the rest of your brothers and sisters) short haired and black. Our family cat is short haired and black so I thought it'd be nice to have something different, not to mention the fact you looked so bloody cute in the photo! It was horrible coming to see you and then having to leave knowing that you'd not be ready to leave for your Mum for another few weeks. And then I moved into my home and for a week it was as though a piece was missing. And a week later and  I could finally collect you!
You settled in straight away and it was so lovely to have company. 
As time has gone by, it's been amazing to learn how to handle being responsible for someone other than myself. To have someone that relies on me is the greatest feeling. You make me so happy. 
It's so rewarding to watch you grow. I love knowing the little bits about you that others haven't a clue. I love that we have a little routine together. I love how much you love me; that when there's visitors over and I leave the room you look for me. That when I'm in the kitchen and you need the toilet you cry for ages because when you were really little you had to cry to let your Mum know that you needed the toilet. And now, I'm your Mummy. I love that I'm the only one who you'll let brush you. I love that you know the difference between play biting and going too far, and that you know that you can only do that to me. I love that you'll come over to me just for some attention and a cuddle. I love the feeling I get when I see my Mum with you. I love that you play fetch and don't even realise how clever you are. I love that you're mine.
And I am yours.
So, in the unlikely event that the professionals who have voiced ideas of taking my Dolly into a cattery are reading this; just you fucking try.

I might have a mental illness but I'm still a responsible mother. And if that means I have to use every ounce of my strength or take sedatives for an entire day then so be it. Because no one is taking my baby away from me.
I'll always be here Dolly, and I know you could have had a better mother; one who doesn't have cuts to dress, tablets to take or appointments to keep but I promise you one thing; you can't find anyone who loves you better than I do.
I love you beautiful, and I'll try harder.

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