As a middle schooler with a fresh ADHD diagnosis, I was angry and ready to keep it bottled up for the rest of my life when I found H.O.P.E. Ranch. Therapy has become like taking vitamins for me. It is a supplemental part of my routine that keeps me healthy. Over the years, I have worked through issues and symptoms surrounding ADHD, Depression, Anxiety, Eating Disorders, etc. I have filled a mental toolbox to help manage the inevitable challenges in life. I continue to hone skills I call upon when weighing whether to face & deal with something, put it away for later, or let it go.
The animals at H.O.P.E. Ranch are wonderful and important. I have cried with cats in my lap. I have laughed walking with dogs. I have stood in silence with horses accepting that it is time for certain things to surface. Watching the way Kit interacts with the animals reassures me, that she will treat me, and everyone, with dignity and respect.
I came to H.O.P.E. Ranch with ideas of shame and stigma around mental illness. I continue to come to H.O.P.E. Ranch full of love and acceptance for myself as a whole human – a professional, daughter, sister, aunt, friend, dog owner, etc. – on a journey of mental health. The struggle is real, and I keep going. Kit and everyone at H.O.P.E. Ranch play a role in that.
There is real magic that happens in the presence of all the life at H.O.P.E. Ranch. – Lauren