"B", who, at the time, was a man in his early 40's, had lived almost of his life in the house in New York State. At one time, his siblings lived with him but they eventually grew up, pursued careers, married, and left, not necessarily in that order.
"B" grew up but he never was able to pursue a career or marry. He has a developmental disability called autism. He has never had a lady friend. He has always lived with his mother.
For years, he lived (and still does live) in his own room in a finished basement in the family home.
When his sister left home, she left behind a black and white cat, named Pépé le Pew.
|Not "B"'s Family Cat-But Pepe Looked Similar|
On Christmas Day 1998 my spouse, our then elementary school aged son and I visited my in laws, and "B". We had a pleasant Christmas dinner and a quiet evening. My father in law, after we all watched "It's a Wonderful Life", went to bed.
My father in law never woke up. It was his third, and final, heart attack.
While we were all coping with the suddenness of this death, making funeral arrangements, trying to comfort my son (whose Christmas trip to Grandma and Grandpa had turned into a nightmare), "B" coped with the sudden death however he could. To be honest, between helping to plan the funeral, helping my mother in law, and being with my son, I didn't pay much attention to "B".
Until I noticed something strange, a day or two after the death. Somewhere along the line "B" decided that the cat had killed his father.
Our indoctrination into advocating for "B" was about to begin.
I will continue the story later this week. Tomorrow, my Spring Things feature.