My boi boi has gone to heaven. Sixteen years with him just wasn’t enough, so I can only hope that he enjoyed his time here on Earth with a terrible human who tried. The void will never be filled, but I have promised myself and his spirit that I will remember all the lessons Oliver taught me.
- Don’t give up.
- Every problem is meant to be solved. If it can’t be solved, it’s something other than a problem.
- Enjoy the food. Food is love. Don’t argue.
- Play is a necessity, not a waste of time.
- Make new friends.
- Visit old friends. Help them remember they adore you.
- Your very favorite belongings DO NOT have to be shared.
- Make people laugh whenever possible. People need to laugh.
- If people want to give you treats and gifts and praises, go ahead and let them. It’s important that people have the opportunity to give. Be sure to show your gratitude in creative ways.
- Nap where the sunshine can warm your back. It makes for happy dreams.
Numbers 1, 5, 6, and 10 aren’t quite daily occurrences. Yet.
In the meantime, I am doing my best to keep busy in the quiet hours between day job demands. Those last few months with Oliver, he needed to be helped a lot, held a lot. So I put aside projects to spend the time. Those projects are back underway, plus a few more. And I’ve discovered since that Scout–the orphaned Rhodesian Ridgeback that Oliver graciously welcomed into his heart five years ago–enjoys being sung to and given long walks away from the backyard that is being frequently occupied by birds. (Scout really doesn’t like birds.) A Mississippi Kite visits recently, and Scout is suspicious of her. So, we walk. And I watch how curious she is about the world outside our little corner. Then I come inside, give her treats, and think about potential side hustles that will pay for us to make future road trips to visit old friends.
Maybe Scout will take to road trips, ride shotgun the way Oliver once did. Enjoy the new people and places, enjoy the journeys. Maybe. She is more reserved than Oliver ever was. Scout is … a people watcher. An eavesdropper. But once she gains confidence in a situation, she can totally preen for an audience. So far, she’s doing well transitioning out of the sidekick role and into the center of attention. Maybe this was meant to be–maybe I was supposed to spend sixteen years learning to be a better person so I could take care of a reserved, super sensitive little girl who needs to find her place, her voice.