A sense of responsibility and being depended on has shown me a lot about my character. Since getting sober again and building my self esteem, my biggest problem is finding the energy and determination to keep myself active when I’m not at program/working etc. when I have time to myself I prefer to play video games, read, or watch tv. Since getting these piglets and having them look to me for hygiene, feeding and every-day care, it’s given me a sense of purpose to wake up in the morning, to not go home after work and take a nap, to show them love and attention the way I would hope someone would do for me if I needed to be taken care of. They’re so innocent, these piglets are little babies, and they’re helpless when it comes to their own well-being. Every day at 8 am I wake up to feed them their morning bottle, I hear them screaming all the way from upstairs! They’ve grown to know who I am and they get so excited to see me come down to greet them. I do what I have to do during the day, and when I get home in the afternoon, they know it’s me when I open the door! They get another bottle at 4 pm and at that time is when I take them outside in their pig pen. While they play and graze the grass I sweep up their wood chips (in which they somehow manage to throw all over their living space) I shake out their blankets, I clean out their potty box and rinse it down with the hose, so it’s nice and fresh for them (because no one wants to use a dirty bathroom) and I sit and play with them! They absolutely love affection! Their personalities are so different from each other and so unique. The third day of taking care of them, I remember sitting in their cage and allowing them to get to know me (understandably so, it takes some time for any animal to become acquainted to you, just like humans) and I’ll never forget the way they both climbed up into my lap and fell asleep on me. That was the day I knew they trusted me, the day I knew they felt safe. Taking care of these piglets was definitely a lot of responsibility; it put me on a schedule and made me accountable, knowing I had two little souls that needed me to survive. They require a lot of attention and constant up-keeping for their living conditions. It helped a lot with my self esteem and self worth, knowing I was being depended on. I grew rather close with them, they knew who I was when they saw me, and there’s no feeling in the world that compares to being needed and wanted.
Couple times my daughter had work taking care of the animals at Patchwork Pastures, in the past I never thought to leave her by herself, but couple weeks ago I had to travel and for the first time I felt comfortable leaving without her because of the sense of comfort, responsibility and love she reflects when she is taking care of the piglets and the many birds at Patchwork. My daughter feels content when she is around animals.
Working with the animals at Patchwork Pastures helped me believe that I can be a responsible adult and capable of working hard. I struggle to get out of bed most days but just seeing how excited the animals got when they saw me made me feel happy and I it made me feel satisfied working with them. Whenever I had a bad day it feels nice to just be able to sit with them and know that the animals won't judge you and they're aura helped me feel better.
Patchwork Pastures A NJ Nonprofit Corporation
108 Route 565 Wantage, NJ 07461
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Patchwork Pastures Animal Sanctuary A 501(C)(3) Non Profit located in Wantage, NJ