I am terrible at sharing a bed.
Not that it was that much of an issue really; sleepovers were rare. I can probably count the number of times he stayed over on one hand.
The very first night we slept together I said, only half joking, that I couldn’t sleep unless I was on the left. He replied in the same tone that he had to sleep on the right.
True to our own words, he always lay, dozed, came at me, from the right hand side of the bed. In the pictures we took, his would have the left hand side of my bedroom in the background; mine would have the right of the room, reflecting our bed-based geography.
The side of the bed is the least of it.
I like the space, the ability to shift into a cooler or warmer part of the mattress as I need, the fact that I can have as many blankets piled across the bottom of the bed as my perpetually cold feet require (as well as bed socks) without having to worry about how uncomfortable they make someone else.
I don’t rest well when there’s another body in there with me. The extra heat, the movement, the breathing (and snoring), the fact that I like to be thoroughly cocooned in the duvet, that my increasingly wonky joints need to be laid or supported at particular angles and heights.
He found my inability to sleep when there was another body present odd. He said he’d found that most women he knew said they slept better when they had company. He found it amusing that the few times he stayed over, he’d wake up to find me wearing an old T-shirt and curling into a tiny space in order to preserve enough of a border between us that his body heat wouldn’t interfere with my need to be thoroughly swaddled by duvet.
I may be able to sleep through anything, including explosions outside my house (at least twice), but I have to be asleep before that superpower kicks in.
And yet, all those other nights, when I had my gorgeous orthopaedic mattress and blanket-laden duvet to myself… When I felt lonely, or cold, or wide awake for no good reason, I would roll onto my right and imagine curling into him, or my hand resting on his chest and playing with the hair under my fingers like I had that very first night.
Even if sleep continued to evade me, doing that relaxed me.
I am terrible at sharing a bed. But now it feels huge and devastatingly empty.
Who else is playing this weekend? Click on the kiss: