Monday, October 4, 2010

Nocturnal admissions

This morning I should have been driving across the Chesapeake Bay bridge to see Kelley at Sunporch Quilts about quilting George. I met up with Kelley at the Annapolis Quilt Guild show back in June and I got to see some of her work on display there (one quilt ribboned, I believe). But instead I am sitting around and waiting for the Ikea delivery truck to show up with my new sofa bed, which will be installed in my sewing room. Because, you see, I need a place to sleep. Alone. That's right, alone. I realize I am about to tread into some very dangerous waters here, but I might as well get it over with.

I do not sleep with my husband.

I can already hear a certain number of people gasping in horror, and another percentage of those are already clutching their pearls and priming their index fingers to start typing a very sanctimonious comment about how they have not slept apart from their beloveds a single night in their entire marriage (except for that time he got busted for pot in Japan) and how happy they have been to not have a decent night's sleep in thirty years because what's a little rest compared to the contentment engendered by spending the night with your face lodged in someone's hairy armpit? Granted, that's hard to argue with; nevertheless I learned after many years of terrible sleep and increasing crankiness that sleeping apart was better for our marriage than sleeping together.

I never liked sharing a bed with another person; I don't even like sleeping in the same room with someone else. I am so particular about how I sleep, that someone else's movements and noises just drive me batshit insane. David went through a period of time in the year before I got pregnant with Harper where he would kick his leg in this convulsive way every 2 minutes or so throughout the night. It was so startling each time, and so disruptive, that eventually I ended up on sleeping medication in order to get through it. The leg kicking thing went away as mysteriously as it had appeared, but since then his snoring has gotten worse as well as his very animated nighttime conversations. He's such a taciturn man in the daytime - I guess he gets it all out of his system while he's sleeping.

For a while we solved the problem by taking turns sleeping on the couch, but then Harper graduated to a big bed and was constitutionally incapable of sleeping on her own. And here is another of those issues that gets people all ready to hop up on their high horse and tell me either that they are STILL sleeping with their children (who are now in college) and that it has made their precious pumpkins secure and loving individuals who will never, ever get laid, or that their children have always slept alone, in a pit, chained to the wall and this has made them secure and fiercely independent individuals who now use fantasies of matricide to lull themselves to sleep.

 I have slept with my kids since Harper was 2 years old, so for about 5 years now.

Believe it or not, my marriage is solid, and my kids are awesome, and despite the musical beds, everyone is pretty content. Except me. I had just managed to get Harper to start sleeping in her own bed, by herself, with her sister in the crib next to her, when Devon graduated to a big bed. She proved just as incapable of sleeping on her own as Harper, and when Harper saw the concessions I was willing to make to help Devon get to sleep, she knew she had me back in her clutches. Their bedroom was moved to the playroom, which has a couch, and I brought peace to the household by sleeping on that couch every night, while David slept in the bed in the master bedroom upstairs. On Friday and Saturday nights, when he doesn't have to go to work the next day and the kids don't have to get ready for school, we switch.

My BP meds have been causing sleep problems, among other things, and so I have been longing to have my own room to sleep in. My sewing/writing room is big enough, and with just a bit of furniture rearranging we could fit a bed or a daybed or, as we finally decided on, a sofa bed. Devon is getting older and less dependent on me to be there all night. We received a small windfall recently and decided that a place for me to sleep was at the top of the list of things to spend it on. Thus Ikea, and today's delivery.

In quilting news, I am making pointy Dresden plates:


This is one of five that will go on a table runner for my sister-in-law. The fabric is from the Aster Manor FQ bundle that my QH editors gave me, and the pattern comes from the Moda bakeshop. I found the instructions less than stellar, but it appears that I did everything right despite that. I actually kept the girls up a wee bit past their bedtime so that I could finish this one, and when I showed it to them they burst into applause. Even David was impressed and usually anything with a flower print makes him squirmy and uncomfortable.

So now that I'm essentially moving into my office, I wonder how long it will be before I decide to install a kitchenette and just live in here full time. Will sleeping in my sewing room make me dream of quilts? Will I post more? Will there be late night Twitter updates? And how long will it be before somebody tries to shove in the bed next to me?

And will my marriage and my children survive the trauma? 



29 comments:

Nancy said...

to each his own...

ah, to dream of quilts..wouldn't that be nice. Instead I dreamt last night that my 18 yo son told me he was gonna be a daddy...and then I realized it wasn't a dream...and then she miscarried..so now an unfortunate mistake has been taken care of by "someone out there" and I am so relieved...Is it bad to be relieved? Cause too many family members read MY blog...I am hopeing it's ok to use your comment section for me...
sorry.
just had to digest that a sec..

and my veri word is doofe..

that's my word for the day...

thanks for letting me use your comment section... I feel better already

Traci said...

My DH just completed a course in college that said something to the effect that 45% of married couples sleep in seperate beds, so unfortunately Megan, your not that uncommon! JK! You're great and I LOVE your Blog!

Zazzu said...

Hee! I love the McCartney reference.

My husband and I are getting close to needing to sleep apart, too. All these years, I've been able to sleep through the snoring. Not so much now that perimenopause has me firmly in its grasp.

Whatever keeps us from smothering our spouses with pillows is a good idea to me.j

Good luck on this and ignore the pearl-clutchers. :)

Vicki W said...

I sleep with ear plugs because of my husband's snoring. We don't have children so I am lucky to have the guest room right down the hall and I spend a lot of time there. It used to bother him but then I reminded him about how often he talks about the importance of sleep and that the comment applies to both women and men! To each his own, I say.
Once I discovered that I was allergic to wheat and removed that from my diet I started sleeping like a dead person. Then I developed horrible jaw pain from grinding my teeth! lol! "Fortunately" my 50th birthday came with incredible hot flashes and I don't sleep soundly anymore. My jaw pain is resolved and I nap in the afternoon!

Kathy said...

I don't sleep with my husband either. We haven't slept in the same bed for 15 years now. He sleeps like a fucking tornado. I prefer sleeping like the dead. He doesn't want to be dead in his sleep so he sleeps in his own room.

Barbara said...

JEEZ ... do I ever envy you ...

Marge Gordon said...

I would love to sleep in separate beds, to get away from my DH’s snoring and tossing and turning. Maybe now that I’m snoring too, and thrashing he’ll give in. Maybe, maybe not, time will tell

My security word is foxyst, a compliment I’ll take!

Anonymous said...

I would love to sleep alone in my own bedroom!!!!!!

Brenda said...

I think you might be surprised at how many couple sleep apart. For us, now that the (5!) kids have all married and left the nest, that leaves us with 4(!) beds to choose from. My hubby loves to wander from one bed to another - ours to across the hall, to downstairs if he gets hot, etc. and he snores like a grizzly bear. I wear earplugs, but I sleep much better when alone. Enjoy your sleep!

wordmama said...

I'm another "separate sleeper" because I get up for work at an ungodly hour and my DH would never be able to sleep through my prolonged snooze alarm use in the morning!

In the words of my personal Guru, Billy Joel,

"They will tell you, you can't sleep alone in a strange place,

Then they tell you, you can't sleep with somebody else.

But sooner or later, you sleep in your own space,

Either way, it's okay, you wake up with youself."

So There!

Anne said...

I hear the sex is better when you sleep apart from your spouse. I still can't figure out how that works, though.

The Twilight Quilters Coven said...

I still sleep in the same bed with the dh...usually...and always with earplugs. If he's not snoring, then one of the four dogs that all sleep with us is. One of the dogs sleeps between us and is as big as a 5-year old.

My favorite moment as of last week was when I put my hand in dog vomit one morning when I went to pull my pillow over my head. Yes, the dog had vomited at some point during the night on my pillow with the rest spewing between the headboard and mattress landing on the floor. I didn't hear it because of the earplugs apparently.

Lisa said...

The sleeping in different beds/rooms thing is a lot more common than you think, I expect. In my own family my parents have their own rooms, and my grandparents as well. Unless we're visiting and we force them to sleep together. In my own home we don't have enough bedrooms for that, so I usually sleep on the couch in the living room. I snore and drive DH crazy.

Maybe it's hereditary?

The Dresden plate looks great!

Megan said...

Oh, I have no doubt that it's common, but someone always gets their panties in a bunch about that kind of thing. I grew up in a world where no self-respecting woman would dare sleep away from her betrothed, and if she did she'd never admit it.

Peggi said...

This made me chuckle - it reminded me of an empty-nester friend of mine who sleeps separate from her husband. Her bedroom is downstairs and his is upstairs. She only goes upstairs for one thing. I imagine he LOVES the sound of those stairs creaking!

vivian said...

Obviously-times are changing! I want separate beds but DH doesn't! I told him wait to I have night sweats-he'll change his mind!

Sarah Craig said...

Well, I'm one of those who can't imagine sleeping apart from her beloved - so I guess I'm lucky that mine is afraid enough of me that he won't demand a separate bed, because apparently I'm the one who snores like a buzz saw!! I feel your pain, though, and actually appreciate any excuse for a trip to IKEA!! It's almost as good as cake...... ;-)

P. said...

Separate sleeper here. Married 27 years. Got tired of earplugs and snoring and the jiggling and twitching that would wake me up, and different ideas of bedtime. Moved to the pullout couch for a couple years, but when DD left home, I got her room and a new queen size bed. Heaven!

Linda said...

Oh no! No more Bitchy Stitcher. You're going to be so rested you won't be bitchy any more--I'm depressed! Giggle, giggle.
Lurking Linda

Anonymous said...

Deborah says:

Posting comment first (reading other comments afterward)....

First of all...the sleeping arrangements....

Good for you! Sleep is important. What room you do it in is irrelevant. Besides you could always tell people that it's just too hard to break those aristocratic habits. (Husbands and wives had their own wings...not just separate bedrooms.)

The DP is perfect! Perfect little points! How are you going to eat off of it though, with that big hole in the middle?

Sweet dreams!

Teresa said...

Are you peeking over my shoulder - again??
I though being a single mom had the sleeping arrangement settled, but NO, my DS of 10 years still crawls in with me regularly. His excuse is that my bed feels better. But he is like sleeping in the furnace! and with me being the peri-menopausal-mama, well, that makes for a rough night right there, add in his teeth grinding, groaning, wandering into MY space little body and I'm ready to go sleep on his bunk bed - if I could climb up there without smashing my head on the ceiling. I say - sofa beds unite - we mamas need a break.

Leah Day said...

I'll be honest - for the 3 years after my son was born, sleeping with my husband was like pulling teeth.

Maybe something in us changes after we have kids? The SLIGHTEST movement would wake me up and then I'd be up for hours, twiddling my fingers in rage.

Then I accidentally bought a king sized bed. (Whoops! Sorry honey, I thought it was a queen, but it ended up a king and now that I'm a mile away from you, I can actually get some sleep!)

I've never slept so well in my life. Make sure the mattress on your sofa bed is comfy and if not, get some foamy stuff to pad it out.

Sweet dreams!

Leah

2ndAvenueStudio-Rachel said...

At first I was a bit like " ha ha what a card, good for you, rest is awesome- sleep is good" then I came over here to comments and read some of those.... If the snoring is getting louder and results in twitching... Get a sleep study! Make sure it is not sleep apnea... which can kill the snorer. I used earplugs for years until he went all "tachycardic" spent 4 days in the cardiac unit and got diagnosed. If he hadn't spent years at the gym and eaten a strict low sat fat diet - he would have been dead....

QuiltSwissy said...

I don't sleep, well, I sleep about 3 or maybe if I am lucky, 4 hours a night. The rest of the time I toss and turn because Frank SNORES even though he denies it. He talks to imaginary compressor people about blowing up the equipment and how he is calling them back from last week. So I just sleep on the sofa! I like him better that way.

And yes, the sex is better when we meet in the same bed every once in a while!

glen

Lori said...

Hooting here! But I agree, get a sleep study--I have sleep apnea! But there are times sleeping in the same bed just ain't gonna happen. My husband works nights, and sometimes when he's gone and I have the whole bed to myself--it's great. If not, there's always the spare room.....

autumnesf said...

What I wouldn't give.

Monica said...

I have not slept in the same room with my husband in probably something like 15 years, except when circumstances do not allow us to sleep apart. We are both less cranky as a result: he snores and I flail.

Like your Dresden plate thing: Sewing with Nancy on PBS has videos that show some very cool things you can do with that pattern:

Anna said...

I haven't slept in the same bed with my Hubby in about 16 years. We did for about the first 4 years of our marriage but neither of us ever got a good sleep. Yes we still love each other! But is hard to explain to a lot of people. The hardest thing was buying a house that had a bedroom big enough for my queen size bed and his king single to fit in.

shadybrooks said...

I cannot tell you how relieved I am to hear there are so many of "US" out there! I too grew up in a world where couples sleeping in seperate beds was not only unheard of - it also ONLY happened when someone was "In The Doghouse"! That said - my DH and I slept in seperate beds/rooms for all but 2 (lack of sleeping) years of our time together before he passed back in August. The man snored like a FREIGHT TRAIN!! No. Seriously!! He could be in the master bedroom at one end of the house (with the door closed!) and I could be out IN THE GARAGE and STILL hear him! (I have many witnesses to this). I must have quiet to sleep, or I am a grumpy non-sleeping mess - so, seperate bedrooms with earplugs it was. :) We were very happy with the arrangement - and both of us were much nicer people in the morning as a result!
Enjoy your sofabed!!