This post is in partnership with Purple Mattress
As many of you know, for the past few months, I’ve been working in multiple head spaces–and living in multiple spaces as well. In the day and evening, I’ve been able to string together stories, noticing the way life overlaps and connects. When I purchased The Mae House at the end of May, I don’t think I knew yet what I most needed from the experiences, or what I would share. But as the seasons turn over, as autumn lays before us and the seemingly endless summer days become something of the past, I see those overlapping spaces, the way things are all connected, and autumn shows me that, all along, it has been rest that has meant the most. And I have not one, but many places to lay my body, places to think, to be.
There’s the primary bedroom at The Mae House, for instance. I spent weeks of the summer squishing into a pre-loved bed that came with the house. But just having a bed doesn’t mean rest comes, and I felt my tendonitis flare up after long dates with my keyboard. I would sit up in bed at night, uncomfortable in someone else’s bed, realizing that, until I learned what The Mae House would articulate for me and through me, it would be someone else’s space.
A bed is just a bed, until it isn’t. At some moment, you realize the weight of a thing, and what you do with a bed, how you sleep, matters. To an extent, yes, design matters too. But my focus has been on Care Work–and this tends to be the most costly work. (Which is why it is often neglected work.) It’s the sort of work that exists in our home spaces, but also within ourselves. After so many nights like those sleepless ones, I got to work on the Care Work of my bedroom–Care Work for myself.
Like much of the work of The Mae House, the bed arrived rather magically. One afternoon, after spending months pinning the room of my dreams, I sat on the hardwood floors of my Brooklyn living room and sketched it as best as I could. The room itself was sparse, with a wrought iron bed, distressed linen, and a few plants. Days later, Grace texted that she saw a free bed frame that looked identical to the bed frames I pinned on Pinterest. She and her partner got their car and loaded it in for me. A few weeks later, we drove through winding hills, where the landscape that cradled the road was blooming with fields of wildflowers.
While the bed frame sat in the mudroom of the house, we made more plans. I thoughtfully purchased more things, came up with crafts to embark on with more time, and things to fix with my own hands. Soon enough, when my carpenter began planning the build of the garden beds, I was upstairs piecing together the free bed frame. Prior to all of that, Purple had delivered all of the beds to The Mae House, wrapped in tightly-bound purple bags that gave no indication of the comfort and honest-to-goodness beauty sleep to be had in my future.
While the kids watched on, I used box cutters to carefully unwrap, shift, and mount my bed. The kids jumped on it as each corner unfurled into the comfiest bed I’ve ever owned. I stood back in wonder, not only at what I had managed to do, dripping in sweat, managing two kids, but also what it meant.
A bed is a bed, until it isn’t.
For the primary room, I choose Purple’s Hybrid Premier Mattress. When thinking of my own needs while in the process of writing the book, renovating a house, and raising kids,, I knew I needed a bed that had the power to cradle and support. Something soft and, somehow, equally strong. Something tender and something safe. The balance came in the support of the Purple Hybrid Premier 3. It is Purple’s “most popular combination of body-aligning, responsive support and cushioning comfort for what customers describe as life-changing sleep. Three inches of GelFlex™ Grid Cradle the body and create a buoyant feel that’s supported by a layer of stainless steel coils.”
Over the last few months, I’ve made my Purple mattress part of my Care Work, along with hand-dyed sheets from Australia, candles from Brooklyn, and candlesticks gifted from friends. I’ve opened the house, the room, and more importantly, the bed to friends and family. Today, the room where the bed resides is being painted the kind of yellow that looks beautiful with a heavy cotton blanket while listening to the evening’s cicadas atop Purple’s simple and textured design. When I make the bed, I can’t help but think about the others who might get those same feelings of comfort and warmth. And, to be quite honest, I keep coming back to the story of this bed, how it came to me, how it was built, and the way I hope it shares and teaches.
Any bed stories of your own?
(This post is sponsored by Purple Mattress. Thank you for supporting the brands that help support and sustain, LY.)