My parents' bed was always warm. A cushion of comfort, wrapped around my body, encouraging me to snuggle in deeper, pull the blankets up tighter.
Those blankets were always heavy. The weight lending reassurance that, yes, this place is safe. Between the crisp, cream colored sheets that never pilled and never seemed to get dirty, were always magically tucked in at all the right places. It felt like the rest of the world couldn't reach me. With my head on my parents' pillows, they whispered to me until my eyes would close with ease.
Those pillows were so soft. Scented by years of use, when I pressed my nose against them, the clean cases would release a cloud of my mom and dad's essence. Even when they weren't in bed, they were there with me, soothing me with their gentle scents.
My parents' bed was a place of magic and healing.Whether it be in the dark of night, seeking refuge from the grip of bad dreams, first thing in the morning, or in the evenings of a day spent ill. If it was safe enough for them, then it was safe enough for me.
It is these things I try to remember when my own kids come crawling into our bed with sleepy pleas for snuggle or sobs of fright on their little lips.
They don’t see the dingy comforter that needs a seam repaired. They don’t understand the intricate dance of stripping bedclothes, disinfecting mattresses or attempts at folding fitted sheets. They don’t see the wrestling matches to fit the elastic under mattress corners. They can not fathom what creates the lingering scent of their father and I in the fibers of our pillows.
So I try to remember.
And, when I do…
With our entire family of six a tangle of sleepy limbs and morning breath, we look at each other through bleary eyes, with the light streaming through the break in our curtains and my bed turns from just a bed into a place where dreams come true.