I thought I was adjusting well to this new lifestyle. This
one-income, live-in-an-apartment, limit-our-travel lifestyle. Then the
bed broke, and I snapped.
Zev, Hubby and I were all piled on
the bed, and Hubby started jumping up and down, to the delight of our
toddler. I was less thrilled.
When I first married Hubby, I remember telling a friend that I felt as though we'd gotten away with a spectacular prank.
My exact words were: "Don't they know we're just kids? Don't they know we eat chocolate cake for breakfast and jump on the bed?"
bed wasn't even a bed. It was a box spring and a mattress on the floor.
To compensate for the lack of actual furniture, I hung two rings from
the wall where a headboard would have been and draped a piece of pale
green fabric between them. We called it "the swoosh." It was all the
furniture we could afford, and it was all the furniture we needed.
complete the adolescent look, we kept stuffed animals on the bed along
with a pile of seven extraneous pillows that I thought added a
deceptive height to the whole mess.
Even after we bought a real
bed, after we bought a house and replaced every bit of Ikea furniture
in our home with big-boy-and-girl pieces, we still kept the stuffed
animals where they were. I thought it was triumph of youthful hearts
over encroaching age. But it turns out stuffed monkeys don't a carefree
When the bed broke, I grabbed Zev and huffed out of
the room. Hubby lingered in the bedroom for a minute and then met me in
the kitchen. There was a split in the wood. That was his postmortem
assessment. A split in the wood that was probably going to go at any
But it didn't go at any time. It went now. And now, I
feel as though we're back where we were 10 years ago: living in an
apartment and sleeping on the floor. But we're no longer those
wide-eyed kids awestruck by our good fortune. We don't eat chocolate
cake for breakfast. And, clearly, we're too old to jump on the bed.
dam that had been holding back my insecurities collapsed right along
with that bed frame. What are we doing? Where are we going? Why did I
quit my job? How is any of this possibly in Zev's best interest?
was mad. At Hubby. At me. At first I was so mad, I refused to speak.
Then I said a few cruel things that I immediately regretted. In terms
of "in good times and in bad," this doesn't even come close to the
worst we've seen. It's fixable. A not-very-expensive fix at that.
old me would have found the whole thing funny, really. For one, the
timing was impeccable. Hadn't I just been warning Hubby not to teach
Zev to jump on the bed "because, you know, it could…?"
didn't laugh. It's startling to snap/crack/boom onto a pile of
splintered wood. It's more startling, still, to find out you're no
longer the old you.
Eventually I apologized to Hubby and helped
him carry the bed frame into the garage. He said he'd look for a
furniture maker to replace the broken beam, and I'd ask some of my
interior designer friends for advice.
That night, as we were falling asleep, he said, "It's kinda fun. Sleeping like this."
smiled in the dark at his attitude. He doubts our decisions and worries
about our future as much as I do. But he's able to laugh about it. I
resolved to do the same.
"Fun? I don't know about that," I said. "But at least now we can jump on the bed all we want."