This day has been on my mind for a month now. I keep thinking back to last year and reading the blog posts I wrote and wondering how I’ve gotten to this point – a year without my Mina. I’ve been near tears for days just thinking back on this time last year …

I miss how secure she made me feel in our apartment. I always knew that no one could walk by on the sidewalk or come up the stairs without a warning from Mina. She was a good judge of people and canines and kept us safe from those she didn’t trust.

I miss knowing that she was always close by, even when I couldn’t see her I could feel her presence.

I miss her unconditional love and devotion and understanding. If you’ve never been close to a canine, you’re missing something really fantastic.

I miss Mina every time I walk in the door, knowing I won’t see her happy face and wagging tail. I miss her on trips to the winery, drives out to the country, road trips …

Sometimes I see her; a flash of a tail going by behind the couch, a glimpse of her face at the window when I come home from work, in the way some dogs greet me as if I’m their long-lost best friend when it’s the first time we’ve met …

I’m not sure what I’ll do today – maybe I’ll go for a drive or visit some interesting site to distract myself from revisiting that awful morning. I wish I could sit by the river in my hometown and watch it flow by on its way to the Gulf or sit at Green Key beach in the sun. The goal is not to sit in my apartment and relive this day last year and spend it grieving and crying. Mina gets very upset when I’m crying and sad and, as Tosca’s mom reminds me, she wouldn’t want me to spend the day that way.

Mostly I wish she was here for me to take care of because I miss being the light of her life.

Mina, taken by her Auntie Lolo not sure of date but that's a summer shave

So, this blog … I’ve been writing in Mina’s blog since April 23, 2009. That’s one year, six months, two weeks, and two days. I think it’s served its purpose well and we get quite a few visits from people looking for various information about canine lymphoma. It will stay here to serve that purpose but I’m not going to write here much more. Sometimes when I have a happy memory of Mina I’ll sit down to write it in her blog only to end up crying and feeling the weight of my loss. I don’t want our happy memories to always turn to tears. If, down the line, something comes up that I feel the need to write about, then I’ll do it but it’s time to let it sit.

Mina is happy and safe and warm and loved and having fun in heaven. Sometimes the miracle really does happen on the other side.

Me and Mina

Summer 1997, on Mina's graduation day from basic training

All my love …