to my beloved mattress, i hope you enjoy your retirement. you will be sorely missed, no other mattress will ever be quite the same.
i remember the day i found you, on the side of the road somewhere in ryde. kat and i tested out the selection of three mattresses and two bases available on that street, and decided on you despite not being part of a set. we loaded you onto the top of the bug, and a base on top of you, legs in the air. it was starting to sprinkle.
on the way home to epping with you, it started to pour and we sheltered under the roof of a closed petrol station for a while, but eventually made a break for it. when we made it home, one end of you was wet but most was protected by the base. we left you on top of the car in the garage until the next morning, when we took you down to spend a couple of days in the sun.
then it was back onto the car for the long slow trek to kat’s place in silver st, st peters. i’ll never quite forget the feeling of driving oh so slowly up the gladesville bridge and having you trying to lift off at the front. kat was holding you down through the window, and i must’ve been doing the same when i could, while i drove. we got there with only one stop to retie.
you were the best thing in that cockroach infested house, and i was very glad to not have to sleep two of us on a nasty single mattress on the floor. and when kat left the country, nick took over both the room and you. it was only after i had left epping where i had the owner’s bed, and spent another semester overseas, that i reclaimed you from wherever nick had ended up, and took you to breakfast point to be my bed. i didn’t stay there long, but you now went with me wherever i went in australia, staying with my parents when i was overseas and joining me in newtown, back at my parents’ and now here to marsfield.
moving in to this house you got put down in the rain by removalists, but you made it, unlike your base who didn’t fit up the bend in the stairs. you are quite bendy, so you fitted well. you stayed on the floor for a bit, before i found a magnificent bed frame for you. it was a bit damaged and i had to fix the functional issues, but that didn’t take long. i enjoyed having you raised on a beautiful frame, even if your slats were bowed, and they creak.
thank you for six wonderful years. you have been so comfortable that you’ve lured me into spending much too much time on you, trying to do all my work on your softness. for the last few years i’ve noticed a few places where i can feel your springs a bit, and even some sharp points sticking out the ends that only get found when i turn you. sometimes you feel a bit flat in parts, but turning you always made all the difference. however i have been increasingly scared of the day when flipping you over will no longer work and i would have to search for your replacement. maybe even buy one and open a whole new can of worms.
today i saw someone putting out a mattress for the council cleanup, right outside my house. i talked to her and she offered to help bring it to my place if i wanted it. it was in plastic, and she said it had been held hostage by her ex and he’d finally sent all her stuff down, but she’d replaced everything already, so she didn’t need it. it felt quite solid and new, from what you can feel as it stands up. it even stood proud, not that i mind that you bow and sag in the middle if you’re not flat on a surface. you only need to perform when you lie flat.
i had to go, but when i got back a couple of hours later it was still there. i started dragging it, but it’s very heavy. someone tried to help, but her little boy didn’t like being put down. someone else came up, who had been out for some exercise, and was more successful. the choice was made, she helped me bring it all the way in, and take you back out again, to the side of the road. you were much easier to handle, the new mattress doesn’t bend half so well, and is a touch wider too, so it barely fits in the frame. i’m sitting on it now, while you lean by a pole outside. it’s very solid, not nearly as giving as you and your ‘chiropractor approved’ springs. it says it has an extra firm spiral care centre zone designed for maximum support, and i guess i have to trust it, and get used to it. i shouldn’t give in to the impulse to run back out there and pull you in and lay you on top, as much as i want to.
i wish someone else would take you in, but i know people rarely do that, and the reasons this has happened are genuine. it’s not as if you were a young mattress even when we first met. i find this very difficult, but i guess i have to let you go.
so thank you, for six wonderful years. you have given me, and several others, comfort and good sleep. you have met every single one of my partners, and several of my good friends. you have worn my dozen pillows and hand patchworked doona cover with pride. you have been there when i had nothing else comfortable, in a dodgy little purple room with mould on the walls, you have waited for me and my uncertain futures, and you were with me as i spent most of this year establishing myself in somewhere that i actually plan to settle for a while.
i don’t know about your history before ryde, but you’ve been from ryde to epping to st peters to randwick to breakfast point to gladesville to newtown to gladesville to marsfield; from the side of a road to side of a different road not too far away.
i never wanted to have to make the decision of who my mattress is, but it can’t be helped. it’s a natural process that we all get older and our springs start to show a little. i’m not sure that anything good happens to mattresses after they leave, if they don’t get picked up before the end of the cleanup. but we humans also just go to landfill, as much as we sometimes don’t like to say it.
i’m sure that after six years it’s the right decision, and i’m sure i’ll get used to the new mattress, no matter how different it feels. i always have all those pillows to help me forget who’s underneath, if i need to, and ease me gently into the difference. and you’ll still be out there for a day or two in case i panic, even if one corner is sitting in the dirt. i guess if i hadn’t come along six years ago you would’ve gotten rained on right then and that would’ve been that. so is the cycle of mattresses. well, at least on the rare occasion when people look past their mistrust of roadside mattresses.
so thank you again, my mattress. you will live on in memory and be sorely missed. but hopefully not too sorely.
six hours later i come home to find the decision is final. you have been taken home by someone else. i am impressed, you must be an exceptional mattress to be taken home off the roadside twice in this climate of mattress distrust. enjoy.