For anyone who knows me, one of the first things you probably find out is that I love cats. I talk about them so often that people will often just say, “What kind of cat do you have?” To which I then have to embarrassingly respond, “I don’t have a cat… YET.”
E is also a cat lover. (Thank God, because that honestly would’ve been a deal breaker for me.) And we both wanted to wait to check out a cat to adopt until after the holidays and after I came back from Sundance. So, last weekend our lives slowed down, and we decided to head to Sante D’Or, a local shelter by our home.
I cannot tell you how massively unprepared I was for cat adoption day. We walked into the shelter, and there were roughly 40 cats that peered back at us, all looking for someone to take them home. And at Sante D’Or, there are some cats in cages, and other cats are just walking around, rubbing against your legs, swatting at your head from perches. No matter where you turn, there’s a new cat face to lock eyes with yours and try to burn into your soul. We did a lap around the place, and the first cat that E noticed — like, REALLY noticed — was Misty.
She was sitting quietly in a chair, minding her own beautiful business, and E pointed to her. “What about that one?” he said. When I first saw Misty, I will fully admit that she looked like any other cat to me. She was pretty, but was she the one?
I decided to sit down next to her. And let me tell you, Misty knows how to work it. Within seconds, she was sitting on my lap, and within minutes, she was rubbing her kitty face against my human face, and basically saying, “YES, I’M THE ONE, OBVIOUSLY.”
The thing about Sante D’Or, is that you have to put in an application for adoption. It’s not like other shelters, where they’re handing you a cat to take home that day, and trying to shove another three in your bag. No, at Sante D’Or, they have a thorough process, and when someone puts in an application for a cat, they put a sign on their cage that reads, “Adoption Pending.” I asked E to go find Misty’s cage, so we could see how old she was, her history, and other details about her. I was not prepared for what E found, because when he pointed to Misty’s cage, there was one of those little signs: Adoption Pending.
We asked one of the volunteers if the sign was a mistake. It had to be a mistake. I literally couldn’t stand up from the chair, because Misty was now standing on my chest, rubbing her furry head all over me.
“Oh, Misty,” one of the volunteers looked at her, then at me, then at the sign on that cage. I thought I was going to start crying. E was quite certain I would. It took me a few minutes to be able to actually pick Misty up, and put her back on the chair, alone.
Once I was able to leave her, it took me a while to adjust to the idea of not getting her. But I tried really hard, because it was cat adoption day, and we really wanted to put in an application. We walked around again, this time really checking out those adoption pending signs and not getting too attached to anyone. The volunteers showed us other lap cats. There was Rosie, and Ophelia, for example. They were great, but they weren’t Misty. Eventually, they showed us an area we had somehow missed, which is when we saw Smash — an orange tabby cat with a tail as fluffy as a duster.
Smash was sweet, younger than Misty, and extremely playful. We played with him for a good twenty minutes, and felt like if we couldn’t get Misty, then we could certainly take home Smash and love him to pieces. There were other people eyeing Smash, saying his name as if the cat was already theirs. So we hurriedly picked up an application and began to fill it out. When we filled out the app, we listed Smash as the cat we wanted to adopt, but also added a note. “If Misty becomes available, we’d like to adopt her.”
We turned in the application, waved goodbye to Smash, (and I secretly waved goodbye to Misty), and then carried on with our Saturday, knowing we wouldn’t hear back on the application for a few days.
Cut to Tuesday of this week, and my phone rings. A woman named Sandy left me a message, saying that Misty was available again, as her adoption fell through, and Smash really needed to go to a home with other cats already there.
I emailed E, because in those few days I’d kept telling myself we were getting Smash, and all of a sudden Misty was an option again. I was confused and, to be honest, a little torn. But he reminded me of how much I loved Misty. Then I looked up her Petfinder profile to remind myself:
Misty was brought to the rescue with her three legged daughter, Osita. After a close call with some street thugs, she’s got a clean bill of health and is ready for a forever home.
I didn’t realize she’d been a teen mom! Or had a three-legged daughter! Or been a street thug! All of it kind of melted my heart, and reminded me of what made Misty so amazing in the first place. I called Sandy back, and we decided to move forward with Misty, the girl who first stole our hearts.
On Saturday, we’ll have what’s called a “home visit,” where Sandy will come to our house, without Misty, and make sure that what we have is a cat friendly environment. We’ve already bought cat toys, cat treats, a litterbox, and even a cat shaped mat where we’re going to put Misty’s food bowls. Tonight I plan to clean and sweep and make this place SHINE so that Sandy can give us her cat stamp of approval.
If all goes well, we could be given the OK to pick Misty up, and take her back home with us that very same day. I’m feeling extremely excited about the idea of having her here, but also really nervous that it won’t work out.
In any event, I will keep you all posted on our cat adoption, and hopefully the next Caturday update will involve our very own cat!