On Tuesday night I lost my best friend of almost two decades to a 2+ year battle with chronic kidney failure. I’d like to say that he passed peacefully, but he didn’t. At the end, it was suddenly obvious he was dying and I had to put him down within the hour. It was very quick, and I’m still in shock.

I realize now I had been oblivious– maybe willfully so– to the signs of his suffering and waited longer than I should have to have him euthanized. I wish he could have told me that he was ready to go earlier. If only animals could talk.

I don’t really believe in spirits or heaven, but I want to believe he still exists somehow, if only as a memory in my heart. I hope he is pain free, happy, and at peace somewhere where he is petted all day and has unlimited table scraps of chicken. I hope someday I can join him.

Today, in an effort to take a break from grieving, my family and I went to the Half Moon Bay area. Our first stop was Fitzgerald Marine Reserve, a hidden gem of a beach with good tide pooling.

I hadn’t been here since I was about 6 months pregnant, so it was nice to revisit with our little one in tow.

There were more hermit crabs than you could shake a stick at, though they’re camouflaged well in this photo. Almost every shell is home to a tiny crab.

After scouring the tide pools for wildlife, we climbed up a small hill to get an overlook of the beach.

We had dinner at Barbara’s Fish Trap (amazing fish ‘n’ chips) and visited Pillar Point Harbor for a moment to check out the boats and pelicans.

Lastly, we made the quick drive up to Montara Beach to catch the sunset.

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I love you and miss you so much, Milkyway. I’m sorry I was afraid to let you go. I hope you can forgive me. I hope you are someplace beautiful.

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