Discover more from Bob Olson Connect: Afterlife Investigator
The Epic Tale of the Missing Tabby
A fun and wild mystery with meaningful messages about life.
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Many years ago, Melissa’s sister, Caroline, and her husband, Danny, went on a trip to Ireland for two weeks with both sets of parents. This left Melissa and I taking care of Melissa’s parents’ two cats along with Caroline and Danny’s two cats. All four cats were at Melissa’s parents’ home, which was about ten minutes from our house.
The cats were raised to enjoy the outdoors, so our job was to go over to their house in the morning to feed them and let them outside, then return in the evening to let the cats inside and feed them for the night. We also spent time with them on both ends to socialize and give them some love.
Three days into their vacation, Caroline’s oldest cat, Daisy, didn’t come home. We didn’t panic right away because these cats did this sort of thing often and almost always came home when they were ready. But after waiting a few hours and calling Daisy in all corners of the yard, Daisy was still missing. Worse, two days later, despite yelling for her day and night, Daisy was nowhere to be found.
Coincidentally, one of our own cats, Pesky, decided not to come home in the interim, which was unusual for Pesky. At this point, Melissa started to panic.
Melissa and I created some “lost” posters with Daisy’s and Pesky’s pictures on them and our phone number. We handed them out around Melissa’s parents’ neighborhood and our own.
Melissa was knocking on doors and talking to people at the beginning. Some folks were genuinely concerned and shocked that we were missing two cats at the same time. A few men, however, took this opportunity to inform Melissa of all the possible ways that cats get killed: foxes, coyotes, fisher cats, cars. Not surprisingly, this shallow mindset caused Melissa to worry more, so she began dropping the posters inside the door rather than talking to people.
After covering all the bases—animal shelters, animal control officers, the public highway department, the police department, local veterinarians, and every house within a two-mile radius—there was little left to do but wait for a phone call or the cats to come home.
Unless, of course, you happen to know several psychics and mediums!
The first medium we talked to was Sally. We happen to be in phone contact with her because I was speaking at her upcoming mediumship demonstration. After I talked to Sally about the seminar, Melissa told Sally about the two missing cats. Sally didn’t get any intuitive hits on the cats. She was a little stressed about her upcoming demonstration, so her mind was cluttered with matters related to the event.
That night, our friend, Nancy, who is also a medium, called to chat. During the conversation, Melissa asked Nancy to see what she could get on the cats using her gift of psychic mediumship. Melissa knew Nancy had experienced success with one pet incident in the past, so she hoped Nancy might have a special connection with pets.
Nancy sensed that one cat was close to home and would return soon. She added that the other cat was farther away but still alive. She tried to get something more concrete, but that was the best she could get in the moment.
The next day, Nancy called to see if the cats had returned and to tell Melissa she would put the question to her psychic development students that evening. Then she told Melissa about her friend, Elizabeth, who coincidentally called Nancy that morning about her cat that was missing for three days. Nancy told Elizabeth that she believed the cat was alive and would be coming home soon. Within hours, Elizabeth’s cat came home.
That night, about ten o’clock, Pesky came strolling home. She was perfectly healthy but gobbled up two plates of food in seconds flat. The next day, Nancy called to say that on the prior evening, her students received the same message she was getting: one cat was close to home and would return soon, and the other cat was farther away but still alive.
I was relieved that Pesky had returned, which helped a few stress wrinkles in Melissa’s face to fade, but the dilemma was only half-solved. Days continued to pass with no sign of Daisy. We continued checking animal shelters and passing out flyers. In fact, local telephone poles were lined with Daisy’s face. Still, nothing was happening on the Daisy front.
On the sixth day that Daisy was missing, we got an email from Caroline in Ireland. She and Danny had found a cybercafé to send us an email because Caroline was feeling worried about her cats, Daisy and Jack. Caroline wrote that she had a bad feeling that something was wrong and requested that we respond to her email to verify that her cats were okay.
Melissa started sobbing when the email arrived. I was surprised she hadn’t run dry of tears by now because she had worried herself sick about telling Caroline the sad news. She knew Caroline would be devastated. After careful consideration, I returned the email that night saying everybody was fine.
The fact is that I hate lying. It doesn’t sit well with me, never mind lying to a loved one. That being true, Caroline would have been distraught to learn Daisy had been missing, which would have ruined her beautiful vacation. A two-week trip to Ireland may only come once in a lifetime. Since they still had a week remaining, I made the difficult decision to save their vacation with a lie, hoping that Daisy might return by the time they got home.
Once the email was sent, I was happy to be done with it, but then Caroline and Danny called the next morning. Apparently, I’m not a very good liar. Caroline wasn’t convinced by my claim that “Everyone is fine. Jack and Daisy hope your vacation is two paws up!”
I answered their call when the phone rang.
“Hi, Bob, this is Danny in Ireland.”
I coughed, squirmed, and choked upon hearing his voice. “Oh, hi Danny. How’re you guys doing? Having a good time?” I spoke with my happiest tone of voice, even though I knew I was in deep doo-doo.
Danny skipped the small talk and jumped right to the point. “Look, Bob, Caroline’s having a bad day. She has this awful feeling like something’s wrong with one of the cats, so we’re calling to make sure everything’s all right. You know how Caroline is with her babies.”
I hesitated so slightly. I really wanted to pour my guts out to Danny and make him bear the burden of the lie. But I knew that was selfish, so I took a deep breath and continued.
“Well, the cats are fine,” I said. “Melissa’s over the house feeding them now.” That was true, but obviously Daisy wasn’t there. “Is there a reason she’s worrying about them so much?”
“Well, I guess she’s had this feeling like something was wrong, so she prayed for a sign. Then she saw two dead birds, which added to her fear.”
I was amazed at Caroline’s psychic abilities overruling my compassionate lie. I wondered if she was feeling Melissa’s emotions or if she was so connected with Daisy that she simply had a knowing.
“Geez Danny, that’s awful, but the cats are fine. Caroline shouldn’t let her fears ruin her vacation.”
“That’s what I told her. Here, I’m going to let you talk to her. Here she is…” Danny handed the phone to Caroline.
I could hear her in the background. She didn’t want to talk to me. Heck, I didn’t want to talk to her either. I think we were both afraid I’d be as unconvincing on the phone as I was by email, which might make her feel worse. Still, Danny insisted she take the phone. He, of course, didn’t realize she was spot on with her hunch.
Oh crap, I thought to myself, I’d better pull this off.
“Hi Bob,” said Caroline in a timid voice.
“Hey kid. Sounds like you’re having a bad day, huh?”
“Yeah, well, I just saw a couple dead birds, and I’ve been getting a feeling like something’s wrong.”
I took a deep breath. “Listen Carrie, Jack and Daisy are fine. You’re being silly. I wish you wouldn’t let your fears ruin your vacation. We’ve spent a lot of time over at your parents’ house, so the cats haven’t been alone all that much.” This was true for the other three cats, at least. “Last night, we watched television with them. Stop worrying and go enjoy your vacation in Ireland.”
“I know,” she told me. “You know me, worrywart. I feel better now that I’ve heard your voice. I’ll be fine.”
After we hung up, I felt like a big fat liar. Yet I also felt strongly about not making Caroline worry while she was on another continent. There was absolutely nothing she could do if she were home that Melissa and I, and other family members, weren’t already doing.
Later that day, I mentioned to Melissa that maybe we should call our friend Joe, another medium. With all these psychics and mediums in our life, it was silly not to use every resource available.
“I was thinking that myself,” said Melissa. She ran to the phone to call Joe.
I knew there must be a lesson in all this, so I didn’t discourage Melissa from calling him. We never call our psychic and medium friends for this type of thing, so I saw no harm in making an exception if it might ease Melissa’s anguish. The fact was that she was dreadfully upset. As soon as she opened her eyes in the morning—her head still on the pillow—the first words out of her mouth were always about Daisy. She also was never one to pray very often, but now she was praying herself to sleep every night. Sometimes she’d wake up several times in the night and continue praying until she fell asleep again. She was using every possible tool within her means, and now our medium friend, Joe, was her next hope.
It wasn’t just that Daisy was missing that churned Melissa’s inner distress. It was the thought of telling her sister the news when she got home from Ireland. She knew Caroline would be shattered, and that added to Melissa’s torment.
I hoped Joe could be of assistance in some way. His demeanor was always full of compassion and love, so I knew he’d impart something caring and spiritual for Melissa’s sake, even if he couldn’t offer guidance for locating Daisy.
I suggested to Melissa that she ask Joe to connect with spirit rather than trying to connect with Daisy psychically. Nancy thought she was connecting psychically with the cat, so I wanted to experiment with something different.
Joe immediately connected with a man from the spirit world, but he didn’t explain who the man was. Joe was in a rush to go to a Little League game, and Melissa could hear his children running around screaming in the background. Everything was fairly rushed because Joe only had a few minutes to offer. Despite the chaos from which he worked, the information he gave Melissa was quite detailed.
Joe was shown by the spirit that Daisy was alive and located near two trailer homes and a slate-blue raised ranch. Joe added that he saw something white in the front yard and thought it might be a wishing well. He said this was located within a three-mile radius of Melissa’s parent’s house. He ended by saying that he felt Daisy was lost and couldn’t find her way home.
When Melissa got off the phone, I was shocked at the detail Joe had offered in only a few minutes. Melissa was frustrated that she caught Joe on his way out the door. After all, there were a lot of trailer homes in the tourist area near her parent’s home, and a three-mile radius was a massive space to cover.
We jumped in the car and started searching based on these new leads. After a few hours of searching, Melissa and I found some places that sort of fit the description that Joe had given us, but not entirely. We repeatedly called for Daisy without success. I eventually had to go back to work, so Melissa continued the search with her sister, Deb.
One woman who Melissa and Deb talked to recommended they check out a house where there were a lot of stray cats. The house was up the street from Melissa’s parents’ house. Shockingly, the stray-cat lady didn’t live in a house at all; she lived in a trailer home. Interestingly, it was next to a slate-blue raised ranch. There wasn’t a white wishing well in the front yard, but there was a white electric water tank that was sitting in the driveway next door.
Was this the white well Joe saw? Who knows? Joe was in a rush. Psychics and mediums misinterpret stuff, but it was white and held water. Melissa and Deb were pumped with excitement at the matching details to Joe’s clues.
The stray-cat lady wasn’t aware of any new cats in the area. After calling and searching the woods around her property, Melissa and Deb came back with nothing but mosquito bites.
In a weird coincidence, Deb’s daughter, Erin (our niece), called Melissa the next day to find out if Daisy had come home overnight. Melissa’s whole family are cat lovers, so they were all worried. Erin asked Melissa if anyone had looked up by the trailer homes at the end of the street. Say what? Nobody had told her what Joe had said or where Deb and Melissa had looked the night before. Needless to say, Melissa and I pay attention to coincidences like this, so we rushed back to that area to give a few extra pints of blood to the mosquitoes. Regardless, there was no sign of Daisy.
Melissa was as frustrated as she was defeated. Here we had three gifted psychic mediums helping us find a cat and all their information came up short. As for Melissa, all her prayers had gone unanswered and her faith was being tested. We were both learning lessons.
On the eighth day that Daisy was missing, the stress was wearing on Melissa. She looked tired and she felt worse. That evening was Sally’s medium demonstration where I’d be giving a talk, and we needed to get dressed up to look spiffy. Melissa decided she’d get a haircut to make her feel better.
Ten minutes after Melissa had left for the hairdressing salon, she called me from her cellphone. In a fit of tears and blubbering, Melissa informed me she found Daisy on the side of the road, killed by a car not far from her parents’ home. She didn’t want to see Daisy in that condition, so she couldn’t bring her body home. Melissa said she was coming home to pick me up so I could retrieve Daisy’s body.
As I waited for Melissa to arrive, I got a cardboard box, an old towel, and a shovel (just in case it was needed). Melissa was still crying uncontrollably when she arrived. On the way to get Daisy, she expressed how angry she was that Daisy was dead. She knew Daisy was hit overnight because Melissa had traveled that road the day before and would have seen if Daisy were there. Melissa thought it was unfair that she’d prayed so hard and that Daisy had to die when she was so close to home.
I asked Melissa if she was sure it was Daisy. She said she didn’t get a close look, but she just knew it was her. I felt so bad for Melissa, for Caroline, for Daisy. I tried to understand the lesson that this whole experience held. I realized it was beyond my comprehension but trusted there was some purpose to it. A friend recently told me that chalking things up to “a greater purpose” is the easy answer. At this moment, it felt like the hard one. It takes a lot of faith and trust to believe in a greater purpose in the middle of tragedy. When it comes to illness, death, and suffering, the closer the person affected is to you, the harder that answer is to accept.
Daisy’s injuries were minimal, notwithstanding the fact that she had died. Only the left side of her head had been injured, meaning she likely died instantly. Her body was quite stiff, so I knew she’d been dead for quite some time. I picked up the poor girl, wrapped her in the towel and gently placed her body in the cardboard box.
When we arrived back at Melissa’s parents’ house, Melissa had run out of tears. Our niece, Erin, was at the house and wanted to see Daisy. I was surprised because Melissa couldn’t even get herself to look at Daisy. Erin was fifteen years old but insisted on seeing her. She explained that she’d seen a few dead cats in the past and was able to remain detached.
I let Erin look at Daisy, happy to have another person help me identify her. Her first reaction was, “I don’t think that’s Daisy.”
“What, are you kidding me?” I asked.
“No. I’m pretty sure that’s not her, but I’m not positive.”
“For crying out loud, we have to get some pictures of Daisy to know for sure,” I insisted.
The problem was that we hadn’t spent a lot of time with Daisy. Caroline and Danny lived in Connecticut. We lived in Maine. Melissa, Erin, and I looked for some pictures that Melissa’s father might have taken of Daisy. He’s a photography buff, so we knew he would have some. It turned out that he had about ten photos.
To my dismay, the next thing I know I’m holding this board-stiff cat in the air, with Erin and I comparing it to the photos. You’d think it would be easy to match the cat to the photos, but you must take into account that this cat had died. It wasn’t the same as looking at a living cat.
Erin and I found several markings on the deceased cat that were nearly identical to Daisy’s photos, yet there were some differences as well. One big difference was that Daisy had some freckle-like spots on her nose. This cat’s nose didn’t have any spots. We wondered if the spots might have disappeared because the cat had died.
Erin suggested we make sure the cat was the correct sex. I just looked at her and laughed. “We’re going to have to ask a veterinarian to look,” I told her. “I can’t move her legs apart.”
Erin nodded with a grossed-out look on her face. At fifteen, I don’t think she was familiar with rigor mortis.
In the meantime, Melissa had called her sister, Deb. Deb left work at lunchtime to come see the cat and help solve the mystery. She arrived with her friend, Hank.
Once again, I held the cat up for inspection. Deb and Hank compared every angle with the photographs of Daisy. They arrived at the same conclusion. “It sure looks a lot like Daisy, but there are some minor markings that don’t appear to match.” We admitted that we better consult a veterinarian.
I brought the cat to the vet who charged me thirty bucks for a five-second peek at it. He informed me that the cat was a neutered female. Daisy was also a neutered female. I pointed out the freckles on Daisy’s nose in the photographs. The vet told me that such pigment would likely disappear upon death. He recognized some discrepancies between the photos of Daisy and the deceased cat but found some distinct markings that were so similar that he was convinced the cat was Daisy. He told me, “I’m sorry, but that’s definitely your cat.”
I left his office unconvinced.
Upon arriving back at Melissa’s parents’ house, I said to Melissa, “Look, you know Daisy better than all of us. Can you possibly get yourself to look at this cat?”
She agreed that we had no other choice. Caroline and Danny weren’t due home for days, so we couldn’t wait for them to identify her. We had to do something with this cat before it got nasty.
By this time, it was three o’clock in the afternoon, five hours since Melissa first found Daisy on the side of the road. I had to give a speech in front of almost two hundred people in four hours, and we still didn’t know for sure if this was Daisy or someone else’s cat. In three seconds flat, Melissa looked at the cat and said, “Oh, that’s definitely not Daisy.”
“Are you sure?” I asked, partly relieved and partly annoyed.
Melissa compared the photos to the cat that I—once again—had to hold, twist, and turn while she inspected it.
“I’m sure,” she said.
Okay. We finally put one problem to rest, but a new problem was born. If this wasn’t Daisy, whose cat was it?
After several phone calls to animal shelters, we found the name and phone number of a person we believed to be the owner. It was a nearby neighbor who lost a cat that fit the same description as Daisy. The cat had been missing for three weeks. After calling the woman on the phone, she told me she didn’t want to identify the cat in person. She preferred to not deal with it. She said it was easier to believe that her cat had gotten into someone’s car, as it would often do, and was now living joyously with a new family.
I buried the cat, then made a nice little wooden cross, on which I carved the name FORD (Found On Road Dead). I thought he needed a name. Then I got ready to give my speech.
The next day, Saturday, we discovered a voicemail message from Sally. On her way home from the medium demonstration the night before, she and her family drove past Melissa’s parents’ house to look for Daisy, where they saw three cats. Sally called Daisy’s name and one of the cats—an orange and white tabby (Daisy’s colors)—began to come to her but changed her mind and ran off with the other two cats. Sally called to ask what Daisy looked like because we never told her Daisy’s colors.
Sally also said that they saw the cats around mailbox number thirty-four on that road. Unbeknownst to Sally, that was the location where the stray-cat lady lived in her trailer home by the slate-blue raised ranch and the other trailer home with the white water tank in the driveway. We had never told Sally about Joe’s message either.
After everything Melissa and I had experienced since I began investigating the afterlife a few years prior, we rarely brushed off anything as mere coincidence anymore. We believe that life’s synchronicities are little flags waving for our attention.
Another search of the stray-cat lady’s property turned up nothing. This time we were with our other niece, Tatum (Erin’s younger sister). Me, Melissa, and Tatum spent the best of that Saturday in the woods calling Daisy’s name. This time, we had mosquito repellant.
Sunday morning, about thirty-six hours before Caroline and Danny were due home, our close friend John called us on the telephone. Since John is another extraordinarily gifted psychic medium, I told him the story and asked if there was anything he thought he could do. He explained that, for him, his gift doesn’t work in this way. But he asked to speak with Melissa.
John talked to Melissa and filled her heart with hope. Unlike most men from whom Melissa had received only negative messages without compassion, John instilled in Melissa thoughts that Daisy was alive and well and would be coming home safely. He offered these thoughts of comfort as a friend, not a medium. He told Melissa his efforts were better spent praying, and that he would do exactly that after hanging up the phone.
Melissa hung up feeling comforted by John’s words. To me, it was a great lesson of how we don’t need to be extraordinarily gifted to be of service to our fellow man and woman. John set his gift of spirit communication aside and helped Melissa with a gift that we all possess—love.
When Monday arrived, I wasn’t sure how Melissa would hold up. This was the day she would have to tell her sister that Daisy had been missing for eleven days. After working all day, we planned to make one final search before it got dark. Caroline would be calling around seven or eight o’clock that evening from her home in Connecticut to see how the cats were doing. She would arrive in Maine the following morning.
Before beginning our search, we stopped to feed the other cats at Melissa’s parents’ house. Each time we pulled into their long driveway, our hearts raced with anticipation that Daisy would be waiting by the door. Every morning and every evening for eleven days, we were disappointed. This particular day was no different. As we drove down the driveway, there was no sign of Daisy.
I walked to the back of the house with equal anticipation. Even as I yelled Daisy’s name, I wondered why I bothered. I felt stupid calling her, but I couldn’t stop myself. I did it for Melissa. I did it for Caroline. I did it for Daisy. Heck, I did it for myself. So there I was again calling Daisy’s name on the night that Caroline was returning from Ireland.
“Daaaaaisyyyyyy,” I yelled, “Daaaisyyyy.”
My eyes darted around the edge of the backyard waiting for Daisy to come pouncing out of the woods.
Again, I yelled, “Daaaaisyyyy.”
Then I heard, “Meow.”
My heart jumped and I almost choked on it. I felt stupid again because I remembered there were three other cats there. Then it occurred to me that we had stopped letting the other cats outside because it would have been too difficult if Caroline’s other cat disappeared as well.
So I yelled again, sort of questioningly, “Daisy?”
And again a response, “Meow.”
I couldn’t figure out where it was coming from. I thought maybe one of the other cats was in the window. So I called her again, and the cat responded again. Suddenly, I looked down and Daisy was there! She came out from under a lawn chair, which was directly beside my feet. I couldn’t believe it. I burst out in excitement, “Daisy!”
My excitement scared her and she took off into the woods.
“Oh my God!” I thought to myself harshly, “What did I do?”
I started yelling for Melissa and she came bolting around the house. Melissa immediately saw Daisy in the corner of the woods. When she gently walked toward her, the poor cat got frightened again and ran deeper into the woods. Apparently, she was spooked after being in survival mode for eleven days. Melissa didn’t waver. She kept calling (more softly than myself), and after what felt like a year of persistent coaxing, Melissa got Daisy in the house. The fiasco was over.
Minutes later (I swear), Caroline called. They had just arrived at their home in Connecticut from Ireland.
“How are my babies?” Caroline asked.
“Oh they’re fine,” said Melissa, smiling at me when she said it. “Everybody here is fine.” Then she told her the story. To my relief, Caroline said I did the right thing by not telling her about Daisy in the email or on the phone. It would have ruined her and Danny’s vacation, she admitted.
What can we make of this story? First, I learned a lesson about trust. Melissa wasted a lot of energy and caused herself a lot of stress due to her worrying. Even if Daisy had not come home, she needed to trust that there was a greater purpose behind what was happening that might be beyond her understanding. It’s not an easy pill to swallow amid turmoil, but the lesson is still solid.
Second, I learned a lesson about control. We cannot control the outcome of certain events, regardless of how much effort we make or how much we pray for a particular outcome. Does this mean we shouldn’t pray? Of course not. This means that we can pray once and trust that our prayer is heard. Think of a prayer as a phone call to God. We wouldn’t call someone several times a day, day after day for a week, to ask for the same favor. Likewise, perhaps we should trust that our prayers are heard the first time and will be answered if they are meant to be.
Third, I believe there’s a lesson about the purpose of mediumship here. Psychics and mediums are not given this gift to help anyone choose winning lottery numbers, discover a cure for incurable diseases, or locate anyone’s lost watch or missing cat. This does not mean that such messages are not possible—there are unique exceptions to every rule—but this is not the purpose for which psychics and mediums have been granted their abilities.
When this story took place, I was only a few years into my investigation of life after death, which included researching psychics and mediums. This eleven-day experience really helped to add perspective to my inquiry. Some experiences exist to teach and guide us, and this was a memorable one for Melissa and me. I hope you enjoyed it as well and, perhaps, learned some of the lessons about life that this story offers.
Thanks for reading my story. Would love to hear your thoughts in the comment section.
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Bob Olson is the host of Afterlife TV, author of two books, Answers About The Afterlife and The Magic Mala, and creator of the directory of psychics and mediums, BestPsychicDirectory.com. His newest venture is Bob Olson Connect, where you can read Bob’s articles before they become books.
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If you’re enjoying my articles, please click the ❤️ button above so more people can discover it on Substack, thanks! (It really helps.)