by Melanie Nicholas
I grew up approximately 1,000 years ago, in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Life was different way back then. Hair was feathered and men wore short shorts. Beer came in a can and it didn’t smell like cut grass with the essence of cardamom. There weren’t a lot of restaurant choices back then and all the television shows that came on after school were about happy families. I have seen every rerun of “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” “Leave it to Beaver” and “I Love Lucy” our rabbit-eared television could pick up.
One of the things that always struck 10-year-old me as funny about those shows was that the grown-ups slept in twin beds. I mean, how was there even a Little Ricky if his parents slept apart?
But after being married to The Hubs for almost 20 years, I think I can say with absolute certainty, June Cleaver was onto something! Now, don’t get me wrong, I adore The Hubs. But sharing a bed, actually sharing, a bed, is hard.
We are on completely different pandemic sleep schedules. The kids and I are living like “Lord of the Flies” over here. Up all night, sleep all day. But The Hubs is an essential worker. He wakes at 5. In the morning. To exercise, y’all. To exercise. Then he goes to work and comes home just in time for dinner. We all eat, play games, maybe go for a swim. But then it’s his bedtime, just when the kids and I are starting to get our second wind.
The dogs and I creep back to our bed around midnight, but I like to watch a little television before I go to sleep. I turn on something riveting, usually about science. Now, The Hubs keeps trying to convince me that made-up space exploration shows like “Stargate SG1” are actually science fiction, but I ignore him. He just wishes he had my deaf ears though. Apparently all the pew-pew-pew of the guns being fired at evil alien overlords is hard for him to sleep through. Even on the lowest volume setting, he tosses and turns through every explosion. Gah, so rude. It is really hard to concentrate on the riveting plot lines and flying pyramid spaceships when someone keeps muttering in his sleep and rolling back and forth, back and forth.
But the real problem we’re having at night is that we can’t agree upon the temperature of our bedroom. I say not cold. My feet and legs begin to cramp below 70 degrees. If you have ever had a cramp that pulls your foot up to your shin bone in tendon-snapping agony, well, you will take my side on this one. But he of the high metabolism wants the room cold enough to hang meat in. We lower the thermostat temperature when he goes to bed, but I always crank it back up when I crawl into our king-sized fridge.
He doesn’t sleep well then, either. At around 2 a.m., pillows and blankets begin to be flung across the bed as he sleep strips his bedding. Then he invariably wakes, tries to get comfortable in the stuffy stillness, and flops around like a sweaty fish out of water until, exhausted, he falls back to a fitful sleep. It wouldn’t be so bad except I am finally sleeping by 2 a.m. and now I’m wide awake, too.
It has taken its toll on me. I need to be rested for my endless days of doing nothing during this calamitous Covid season! I was just about to get The Hubs a twin bed of his own or relocate him to the room when, like manna from Heaven, he discovered the BedJet! Now, if you missed this amazing invention on “Shark Tank,” let me describe it for you. Picture an old school CPU with two feet of dryer vent hose attached to a vacuum upholstery cleaning tool. Put the box on the floor by your side of the bed, then snake the hose up the mattress and end with the upholstery tool peeking under the bottom of your top bed sheet. Like an elephant spraying water from its trunk, either hot or cold air will begin to blast out of the machine’s snout when you turn it on.
It is miraculous, y’all. Now, as if this wasn’t amazing enough on its own, the BetJet only heats or cools half of the bed. And that precious husband of mine got one for each of us! Now I can turbo heat my side while he plummets the temps on his. The best of both worlds. But my favorite feature of the Bed Jet’s is its volume. Because when it ramps up, it drowns out whatever science documentary I happen to be watching.
I guess we won’t need those twin beds after all. My mom is going to be so proud. Turns out, I am a sharer!