Yesterday, our last day together was in my mind all day. I went to church, I hiked in the battlefield park, I came home and showered and even ate, and she was right there in my mind all day. I cried a lot yesterday. I’ve cried a fair amount today, too. I am not at all accustomed to living without my dear love and I don’t know that I ever will be. It seems that life without Mina will always be an imitation of life, without the love and joy and happiness she brought to it.

This morning I awoke around 1:32 a.m. I called Dr. Smith two weeks ago at 1:22 a.m. This is the fourth morning since Mina died that I’ve awakened at that time. Colleen tells me it’s because it was such a traumatic time for me; I still wonder if it’s guilt for making the decision that ended the life of my dearest love. I’ll always second guess that decision; I don’t see how it could be otherwise.

I’m still trying to organize all the digital photos of Mina that I’ve found in various places. I get started and I have to quit because I remember our life together and it hurts so much that it’s over. I’ll try to have another brief slideshow up this evening.

You have no idea how I’d like to skip the holidays, and that includes my birthday in January. Mina and I spent every Christmas together since her first Christmas in December, 1996, and every Thanksgiving together since 1997. At my 50th birthday party this past January, I swear that Mina thought it was all for her and that’s OK. She enjoys parties far more than I do; Mina knows how to socialize with every animal – human and non-human – in the room. She was healthy then and spent hours walking around visiting, taking only short breaks for snacks, water, and rest.

Mina in January, 2009 at my 50th birthday party at BOW

Taking a break at my birthday party, January 2009

We’ve spent every Thanksgiving since 2002 with Sue and Robin, so that will be sad for me this year. Everyone will understand and I hope share any Mina stories they may remember. I plan to work at the Sanctuary that morning before joining the party. Mina loved Thanksgiving with all its opportunities for illegal snacking and loads of attention.

New Year’s Eve wasn’t always a big deal for us. I left her with a babysitter once to go to a big party at a stadium that wasn’t terribly satisfying. Mostly, we stayed home together – wherever we were living – and in the past four years we’d watch all three “Terminator” movies on deluxe DVD version, I’d eat some chili and Mina would have her snacks and we were in bed shortly after midnight. Those were the best times – when it was me and Mina together enjoying each others company.

It doesn’t seem like two weeks. It’s hard to tell, time passes in a very odd manner when you’re grieving. It could’ve been just yesterday and sometimes it feels like she’s so far away from me. Now, I wear an antique glass locket around my neck that’s engraved with “Mina, My Beloved” and contains some of her hair. I chose her blondest hair because I used to love running my fingers through her incredibly shiny blonde hair. There’s a photo in a nice frame on my desk, too. All her things are around me but they give me no comfort.