Let’s be honest for a moment – 2009 represents the worst year of my entire life. I’ve lost family over the years, of course, some died of diseases, some died of old age, but none has ever left me completely devastated like losing Mina to cancer. You’d think I’d be eager to say “goodbye” to 2009, right?

No. I feel deeply sad about leaving behind the last year that Mina and I were together. If you think that seems irrational or silly, you’re probably right, but I’ve learned since Mina died not to fight the grieving process, just let it happen and feel it and get through it. I’m glad I’ll be sleeping at midnight and I’m glad I’ll be back on the road in the early morning. Driving gives me a huge distraction from my innermost thoughts and I’ll be traveling towards home (with an overnight stop in Atlanta to visit friends) to the place where Mina and I lived together, where memories of her are sharpest, where I can see her things about me, where I can go back to my routine of work and volunteering at the sanctuary, where I can, perhaps, find some direction for my life without my Mina Bean, where I can be busy. Idle time is not comforting, not in the least.

What will the new year bring? I have no fucking idea. I’m still taking Colleen’s advice and not looking that far ahead but focusing on getting through the day, or the difficult hour.

Mina, my MIna, here’s a kiss for your sweet face