Oliver brought so many people into our lives. Anywhere we took him, we were stopped by people who could instantly see how friendly (and funny) he was. He was a magnet that drew people of all ages. Through Oliver, our network of friends grew–whether it was meeting people at fundraisers for the MidAtlantic Bulldog Rescue or just playing in the park, so many people have come into our lives because of Oliver.
And, oddly enough, even more people came into our lives after Oliver’s passing. If I am to believe (and I do) that everything happens the way it is supposed to happen, I can’t be sad that this new group of friends never had the opportunity to meet Oliver. It’s very interesting to me that this particular group of friends have all suffered losses of their bulldogs right after we lost Oliver, after we began to get to know each other. There is something tugging, some deep knowing inside of me, that it was supposed to happen this way. I know, I know. It sounds kooky and weird.
There were moments when I could (hopefully) offer some comfort to them simply by repeating words of condolence that had been offered to me because Oliver was the first to leave us, but I feel it goes deeper than that. Losing a fur-kid is difficult. It’s strange that in this new, small group of friends we have had three losses back-to-back. I believe we were meant to be friends, meant to support each other through our losses, and meant to know each other. It is as though when Oliver died, he brought me closer to one friend immediately before she lost her Dixie. And, as we were getting to know another couple, they lost their Becky. None of us were close prior to losing these beautiful bulldogs; it all came to BE after losing Oliver. Maybe we each understand grief differently and can offer different levels of comfort to each other and the Universe knew that we would need each other in that way.
I believe things happen as they are supposed to–both the good and the bad. And I believe we were meant to be friends and a support system for each other. The timing of these growing friendships might always be a mystery and I won’t understand the “when” of it all. But I do understand the “why.”