One of our less brilliantly successful forays into attachment parenting was The Family Bed. When Axa was born, we had a queen-sized mattress on box springs on the floor. Unfortunately, it was Tony’s old bed from when he was growing up, and he still had his old habit of sleeping diagonally on it. That technically still left half of the space on the bed open, but it was not very usable space, since it was bisected by him. I got my revenge when I was pregnant, because I slept on the wall side and rolled my very pregnant body right over him every time I needed to go to the bathroom (which at eight months pregnant was pretty often).
OK, I realize that this is going in a TMI direction. The point is, by the time we added in a baby who was a very active sleeper, that queen-sized bed was feeling pretty small. We toughed it out for nine sleep-deprived months before finally making her a little bed on the floor next to ours, and then kicking ourselves and our bed completely out of our apartment’s lone bedroom when she turned one. Yes, it was awkward seating our dinner guests on the edge of our bed and pulling the table up to them, but it was worth it for the sleep. (At least it was for us. I’m not sure about the dinner guests.)
When Raj came along two years later, we already knew that one queen-sized bed was far too small for three people. So we went overboard in the other direction. We bought a California king-sized sleigh bed and a matching crib. We adjusted the crib until the mattress was exactly the same height as the bed, carefully filled in the small gap between, and bungeed the two together. It looked a little strange, and it took up most of the room in our bedroom, but the sleeping space was vast. Of course, Raj turned out to be a much easier sleeper than Axa (and much less addicted to the all-night milk bar). But it was pretty fun to have such a gigantic bed.
When Raj was ready to sleep on his own, we converted the crib into a toddler bed, and that’s where he’s slept up till now.
He loved his little bed. But at the age of 5 and 11/12ths, he could barely even stretch out in it. So we began the search for a new one. Since there were no beds handy on the curb, we went for the next best thing: craigslist. $85 and 24 hours later, Raj could be found in his bedroom, busily erecting his new, twin-sized bed.
It took a good two hours of hard labor,
And assistance from Axa and Dad (not pictured),
But by bedtime, the new bed was fully assembled and functional. And possibly the most awesome bed on the planet. I give to you: Raj’s castle!
Yes, it’s pink, and I absolutely love that Raj didn’t even comment on the color. He just picked it out of all the available beds on cragslist and said he wanted it. So he’s dealt a heavy blow to the stifling monochromacity of gendered marketing and become king of the castle all in one day. Not bad at all.