"I have never been a dog person. Well, that is to say until this spring, one of the hardest times in my life, and for the world as a whole, I haven’t been a dog person. I got my dog, Jackson, in May. A month when it seemed like there was, at last, a glimmer of hope. The sun was finally out, the earth was warming, and the endless days of quarantine seemed to be coming to a close. That is what this dog symbolizes to me: hope. And he continues to give me this gift everyday. Even the times I want to be mad at everything and everyone; the times I feel lost and alone, he has a way of making me smile and reminding me that there are better days ahead. So this is a thank you, although he’ll never know it. Thank you, Jackson. Thank you for filling a hole in my life I never knew was there. Thank you for loving me unconditionally in the way only a dog can. And thank you most of all for being my beacon of hope."