My first bed out of college was an air mattress. I slept on it for a couple months until I did the “big move” and my real bed showed up. Rolling off the side of the air mattress to get up was apart of my normal morning routine. My alarm clock sat on the floor next to the mattress. Nothing could break, because nothing could fall. My view of the bedroom was from the carpet up.
When my real bed came, it seemed so extravagent. I replaced the useful, ugly mule air mattress with a slicker, thoroughbred ‘real’ mattress. With a slight twinge of sadness I rolled up the air mattress and tucked it away. Forgotten.
I didn’t really need a real bed.
Look, I still live in a one bedroom apartment. Three rooms total and one hallway. Even if I wanted to live extravagently I couldn’t! But I’ve realized that I still have this American need to keep growing growing growing. I look around and think about how I’ll be able to upgrade this or that someday when I make more money. Maybe it’s in my best interest to live in a confined space — I can’t fill it with ‘upgrades.’
I check my heart.
I check my heart for vital signs. Am I upgrading because I am greedy or am I upgrading because I need to in order to feel as though I’m progressing in life? Even though I may not need the upgrade itself (new chair, computer, TV, etc.) do I need to upgrade so that I don’t feel stuck? Upgrading for the action, not the item. That’s the sticking point, that’s where my heart is, and that’s why I occasionally upgrade.
I still have an air mattress and I really like it! It’s tucked away in a closet, the ugly and wonderfully useful mule that it is.