Flippy (Cat Plushie)

In Fun
Stuffed Siamese cat plushie on a bed.
Stuffed Siamese cat plushie on a bed.

I don't remember when Flippy first entered my life. The family story is that my father gave her to me on my fifth birthday, but in my mind, she's always been there. A Siamese cat plushie that has been my constant companion my whole life.

I named her Flippy because when you toss her in the air, she does a perfect flip. As a child, Flippy stayed on my bed every night, went with me to every sleepover and vacation, and listened attentively as I poured out all my hopes and fears. As friends and pets came into and out of my life, Flippy was always there, and I knew I could count on her.

When I went to college, Flippy came with me. When I moved to Japan to teach English, Flippy came along. Wherever I went, Flippy was a reminder of home and family and love. When I got married, Flippy had a place of honor on the banquet table, sitting in front of my husband and me. She still stays on my pillow every night when I go to bed.

Flippy has started to show her age. Her nose has rubbed off, her whiskers are bent, and her face and stomach have changed colors from white to dingy beige. But she's just as important to me. Some people might think it's strange that a 36-year-old sleeps with a stuffed animal, but when I hug her, I feel the love of my father, who died almost fourteen years ago. I feel comforted and cared for. I feel a link to my childhood, and deep gratitude to everyone who has helped and encouraged me. Flippy is my object of comfort, and I can't imagine life without her.

Place(s): Alaska

– Emily Koehler-Platten

Relationship:  Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more