Mattresses

Mattresses are unique objects. While they provide padding and structural support on the bed, I’ve found mattress technology fascinating. How do you increase the comfort people feel in the last few conscious moments of their day before they sleep? How do you guarantee that they’ll sleep better, when it’s likely not a feeling they will recognize till they awaken the next morning?

I was never really much of a bed person. I found it easier to get things done at home while I was sitting on my beanbag, or at my table. It gave me something concrete to rest on. My bed was at an awkward angle as it was, which made sitting up uncomfortable. As a result, I’ve enjoyed most of my life sitting at desks and being productive. This was until I moved to University and recognized the freedom one possesses when their bed provides them with back support and can keep you seated up. In the first few years at University, my bed was against a wall, but at an angle that stretching out my feet while sitting was an improbability. In the winter of my third year, I changed that: actively moving the bed toward a corner, thus allowing for back support and leg-stretchability. In that time, I’ve basically become a bed-person. My mattress has become a source of comfort in this place: quite literally being the most comfortable place in my entire room in the hostel.

When we relocated from Dubai to Bangalore, I remember trying to help out with a lot of the furniture selection we had to do. My parents gave me a lot of freedom to select things for my own room, and I wanted to make sure I did justice to that freedom by exercising it wherever possible. The one thing I remember vividly is that we went to this Kurl-On mattress showroom in Marathahalli to figure out mattresses for the house. We needed 3 of them. My parents picked out something super-comfortable for their bed. Mine was a tier below. Just as comfortable, without the expense. I remember seeing the pattern on the mattress: it was cream coloured with flowers, as opposed to the dark, solid grey mattress my parents picked out, and being concerned. I voiced the fact that they were getting me something different than they would pick out for themselves, which made them reconsider and order the exact same mattress for my bed too. I was a spoiled child, clearly. But every night I lay down on my pillow and felt this additional comfort: not because it was a top-end mattress model, but because my parents and I were sleeping on the exact same mattress. Separately, but together.

Today, we had to throw out that mattress on my parents’ bed. For a reason we couldn’t quite diagnose exactly. Which brought back a flood of memories, naturally. It’s weird to think that I didn’t fully appreciate its comfort when it was there – but now, that I look at the empty wood its left in its place, I realize how valuable an asset that mattress was in my life. I’m not sure when or how we’ll replace it. Even when we do though, things aren’t going to be the same: the mattress in my bedroom will no longer be an exact replica of what my parents sleep on at night – eliminating another common thread that tied the three of us together in our home. I’m glad we spent enough time together over this winter to endure that tearaway.

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