Not only would it avoid the need for me to withdraw from my work day and relocate Ivy each time someone wanted to see the house, but for a cat that is so structure-oriented you could set your clock my her nap, meal and treat times, avoiding the change and disruption altogether was likely the best idea.
Given her early signs of discombobulation and confusion from just having some furniture leave the house for the staging process, I contacted her hotel to see if they could take her sooner. I was relieved that they could.
I knew she would get the best of care and attention for the duration of her stay. I’ll never forget the time I went to pick her up after an extended holiday and she jumped out of my arms and ran back into her room. I was heartbroken, but also deeply reassured that Ivy liked it here.
Just the same, letting her go was a challenge. I didn’t foresee that this would be such a difficult part of the home buying and selling process.
I reasoned with myself that this would be good for both of us. By having her out of the house for the last few days before the house was officially listed meant I wouldn’t have her stuck to me like Velcro while I tried to pack boxes to bring to the storage facility. It would also mean not having her play supervisor, roaming around and meowing at me with the intensity of an emergency vehicle siren in disapproval at all of the changes going on.
Even though I knew that sending her away was a necessary step, it wasn’t without a sense of parental guilt before I even put her in her carrier. In normal times, she gets lots of attention, but with each hour ticking away quickly and a list of to-do items still ahead, sitting on the La-Z-Boy and watching TV together wasn’t really an option for me at this time.
What also pained me about sending her away was that it wasn’t just about her safety and security in a time of transition. Even though she is not a registered support animal, in stressful times, just having her jump into my lap, curl up and purr contentedly can be all the reassurance I need to take the edge off.
Of all possible life events, to me, home negotiations rank pretty high on the stress scale. Sending Miss Ivy to her hotel seemed counter-intuitive.
Plus, to send her away for the entire duration of the showings and the sale process, meant a potentially prolonged separation that had me even more conflicted, but I still knew it was for the best all around.
Unfortunately, the sense of parental guilt was made worse by a cat who does not like car rides and who meows unhappily the whole way there. This trip to the hotel was about as gut wrenching as it gets.
I hate to admit it, but upon my return home from the cat hotel, I felt relieved and a sense of freedom.
It wasn’t that Ivy was holding me back, but without my cat roaming around, I could fling the interior doors wide open and work on several rooms at the same time at Steve Austin “bionic” speed.
It was also the opportunity I needed to clean out the litter box, and then to gather up her belongings to bring them to the self-storage facility. Then I washed all of her blankets and the throws that I keep on furnishings to protect them from her little claws, followed by a thorough vacuuming of the main areas.
By the end of the day, I was so pleased at what I accomplished in such a short time. Sending Ivy to her hotel a little earlier than expected was indeed the right decision, as I knew she’d be sleeping contentedly back at the hotel and not stressing about what was going on at home.
And if my cat is not stressing, then I am not stressing over the fact that she is stressing, so I can feel more relaxed as well.
With the home listing just a few days away, I could fully commit myself to the staging process and the last minute touch-ups.
But I still missed Miss Ivy.
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