After I came home from my last hospital stay, I noticed that my mattress was having some kind of breakdown. A valley had formed on the side where I usually sleep. I had turned it several times, but the valley would not go away. My sleep, which I badly needed for healing, was interrupted as I tried to “climb” to the high side to even things out.
Finally I asked myself, “Why are you doing this?”
I can’t go back to work until a year after my last transplant (June 10), but surely I can afford a new mattress, I reasoned.
My friend Margaret had been raving about her new memory foam mattress, so I got one for myself.
It’s been about two weeks, and I still can’t get used to it. The same valley forms around my body as before, only this time it’s supposed to do that. But, half asleep, I roll around trying to undo one valley and, in the process, I make another.
Was one bad memory leading to another?
Today I talked to Margaret. First I told her that I was getting a little jittery about my upcoming checkup, and then I launched into my mattress mishegos. Midway through, I realized that the conversation was sounding like it belonged in a “Seinfeld” episode.
“When you sit on the edge of a bed to put your shoes on, your mattress is not supposed to sag,” I said.
“But it goes back to its normal shape,” Margaret reasoned.
“Yes, but it’s bothering me, and I think I might exchange it. I’m losing sleep over it,” I said.
Over the many years of our friendship, Margaret has listened to me obsess about a range of issues, both large and small. She suggested I find out the return policy and then take advantage of any grace period to give the mattress a chance.
But then she said maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea to be obsessing about the mattress after all.
“It will take your mind off your checkup,” she said.
I guess there's something to what she said. Most of the time we try to distract ourselves with good thoughts and memories, but all aspects of everyday life offer an opportunity to focus on what's right in front of us.