Thursday, June 28, 2012

50 Shades of Sealy

I have a theory that you can tell exactly how long a couple has been married by what is in their bedroom. Eyebrows, eyebrows.

Get your minds out of the gutter this isn’t 50 Shades of Grey; I’m talking about their mattress and the sleeping arrangement that goes with it.  

Marriages like mattresses change over time. In the beginning they are small and springy. As time goes on they get bigger and pick up a few lumps and broken springs along the way. A few years later they are sagging in the middle but comfortable. Below I will outline the three distinct phases of marriage by mattress. 

Phase one. Ah, wedded bliss. The first few months of marriage finds our happy couple with a small but springy mattress. Sleeping arrangements include constant contact at all times. The newlyweds can’t go for 10 seconds without being snuggled up together like two love birds in their feathery love bird-ish nest. Somebody cue the violins. However, this revolting phase doesn’t last long. At some point one or both will realize that air is needed to breathe at night and that having someone’s face in your armpit or foot on your back is not conducive to a good night’s rest. The couple then retreats to their separate corners.
Excuse me while I gag on how adorable these two are.

Another thing that happens during this critical separation period is the realization that your new spouse may enjoy sleeping conditions that you do not. Take for instance Buns and myself. It became clear to me early on that Buns is ¼ Polar Bear. He needs the bedroom to be at roughly absolute zero to be comfortable while he sleeps. This being the case he throws the windows wide open in the middle of winter, has the air conditioner on full blast in the summer, and regardless of the season has a fan pointed directly at the bed on the “wind tunnel” setting.

All this would be fine except for one small detail. He has also mastered the “tuck and roll” maneuver which is the act of taking the sheet and quilt that covers both of us, tucking the edges between his hands and knees and then spinning 360 degrees at high speed so that he is wrapped completely and I am left with nary a thing to cover myself with. Once the “tuck and roll” had been completed I would wake up a few minutes later with teeth rattling and frostbite creeping up my extremities.

The first few times this happened I would gently shake him and ask for the blanket back. It immediately became apparent that he was like a bear in other ways as well. He hibernates while asleep and gentle shaking does not even solicit a snort of comprehension. Frustration would set in and nights would soon find me ripping the pillow out from under his head and chucking it across the room. Then, when he would grumpily get up to go find it I would steal the blankets and do a tuck and roll of my own. Outright tug-o-war would ensue as we both fought to keep our share. Separate bedding was the only answer and it continues to this day.

Phase two. Enter children. This phase is the one in which the small cozy bed is generally upgraded to a larger model for one reason. As soon as children enter the equation your bed is not your own any more. Every night there will be at least one or two kids, assorted toys, and possibly even a dog or cat who will make an appearance and shove you out to the nether regions of your sleeping space. Even if you are lucky enough to move up mattress sizes you will learn how to sleep while balancing precariously on the ½ inch of foam at the edge of your bed.

This is also the phase where mysteriously when you climb into bed at night you find 27 Goldfish crackers have somehow migrated into your sheets and taken up residence. Springs in this part of life are taking a beating as the bed is used as a trampoline for toddlers. “Look mom, I can do a front flip!” Teens also find this to be the premium hang out real estate while playing video games and the pizza stains are there to prove it.

Phase three. Children have grown up and pets have been banished to the living room. The couple is finally able to sleep alone on their comfy saggy bed without interruption. The only problem is that by now due to arthritis, middle of the night bathroom trips, or insomnia neither one of them is in the bed much at the same time. What usually happens is that one person abdicates to the couch or guest bedroom so that they can both get some rest.

Then they die.

Just kidding. Here’s the part where I restate my thesis statement and bore you all to death. So instead just know this, ice cream is yummy, fireworks are fun, and make sure to invest in your mattress and your marriage and hopefully you will both get out with just a couple of broken springs and some pizza stains.



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