Posted in Autism, Fun Side of Nick

Blog #63~Furry Family Members

Blog #63~Furry Family Members

It is with great sadness that I begin this piece by telling you that our cat of 17 years has passed away.  She has been such a part of our family history and will be dearly missed.

I posted this picture on Facebook last Saturday and received so many thoughtful sentiments.  I often post pictures and updates about Miss Mellie.  It appears she had quite a following……..

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I loved her from afar.”

“She warmed the hearts of many of us on Facebook too.”

“Miss Mellie stories have been endearing and a bright spot in my week.”

“We take in theses wonderful animals, love them, take care of them and they become part of our family. Part of our daily routine, part of our home and part of our life. When they are gone it is like an emptiness that is hard to explain to someone who doesn’t have a pet. But those of us who do…we understand your pain and wish we could help you. miss seeing her face.”

“So sad, I will miss the Mellie stories.”

“Oh, I am so sorry. A furry loss is a tough one.”

Our son, Nick who has Down syndrome and autism had a lot of fun with Miss Mellie over the years.  If you are a regular follower of the blog you know about a lot of the pranks he has pulled on her.  Nick’s antics have given me enough material to write two blogs, Stuff on My Cat (Blog #33 located in the December 2012 archives) and Stuff on My Cat, Part II (located in the July 2013 archives.)  Here are the last two things he put on our sweet, gray tabby 🙂

Oh no, looks like Miss Mellie is getting some deep pressure with the therapy ball….

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Nick thought she might enjoy some music, rock on kitty……

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Harold makes a rough landing into the cat food.  Hardy har har, Nick 🙂

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On our cross country move from Livermore, California here to the Chicagoland area we stopped for the night in Reno. Six year old Nick decided to do a little “Magic Mike” action for Miss Mellie.  I don’t think she was too impressed……..


A sweet moment between Nick and our cat. By the way, he hasn’t handed me the icon picture of her out of his PECS communication book yet.  But I know he will soon.  That moment will be a tearful one for me 😦

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She shared so much love with our family and friends. She adored being in Hank’s arms and seem to comfortably nestle there……

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Snuggled in with Al, she was a good lap cat…..


She insisted on being on my lap, helping me to write 🙂

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I will miss so many things about our cat like how she follows the sun beams throughout the day and running into the kitchen whenever she heard the can opener, tuna!…….

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How she parked herself in front of the fireplace during the winter months waiting for  the hearth to be prepared for her……

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Most of all I will miss our lap time together, the sound of her purring, her warmth and the love that she gave all of us. Thank you KB (my cat loving friend), for framing this picture and giving it to me last Christmas.  I will cherish it always…….


A younger and heavier Mellie that my sister, Laura gave me… Aaahh she’s so cute…..

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My friend Jimmie P. shared this quote on my Facebook wall…..

There has never been a cat who couldn’t calm me down by walking slowly past my chair.”
~Rod McCuan

That’s what is in my noggin this week.  Rest in peace, Miss Mellie.


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Teresa is the Author of "A New Course: A Mother's Journey Navigating Down Syndrome and Autism" and the mother of two boys. Her youngest son, Nick is 29 years old and has a dual diagnosis of Down syndrome and autism (DS-ASD). Teresa's passion is helping others understand and navigate co-occurring Down syndrome and autism. She is a DS-ASD consultant, advocate, speaker, and author. Follow Nick's world on Facebook, Instagram & Pinterest @Down Syndrome With A Slice of Autism and on Twitter @tjunnerstall. For more information and media links, visit

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