Sunday, September 6, 2020

I'm Never Going Back to Bed (Probably)

The only thing that's gotten harder is getting out of "bed."

I've been sleeping in a hammock full time for almost two years now (started in October of 2018), and there are some things that just... work better, that I never even thought about when making the change.

Sitting Up In Bed
To sit up in bed, you need to stack up something underneath you, be it pillows, or part of your headboard, or blankets...

To sit up in a hammock, all I have to do is slide myself higher up one side. This mostly involves reaching above my head, grasping the sides of the hammock with each hand, and pulling until my body sits at a steeper angle. Since the angle is entirely created by the gravitational force of my body against the fabric, there's none of the bumpiness caused by stacking blankets or pillows; it's always a smooth curve.

And because you don't need to assemble anything, you don't need to disassemble anything either. You can fall asleep right here, just like this. Your body may slide down to a more balanced and level position in the night, but you don't have to worry about losing the comfortable spot you've found or disturbing the cat in your lap.

Pillows
When I last slept on a bed, I used between three and five pillows. One for my head, one for my knees, one for the ankle of whatever leg was on bottom, and up to two body pillows.

These days, I use one, and it's for my knees, not my head.

I don't need a head pillow because it's already elevated by the slope of the hammock.

I don't need an ankle pillow, because that foot, if it needs support, just goes over the side of the hammock.

I don't hardly have room for a body pillow, and the curvature and cocooning of the hammock fills that need reasonably well. I have tried falling asleep with a body pillow when I need it, but the pillow inevitably ends up on the floor by the time I've woken up.

Cleanliness

[M]y hammocks are machine washable.
Good luck doing that with your mattress.

I'm not really using fewer linens, because instead of using blankets and sheets, I'm instead using two blankets; quantifiably it's fewer, but volumetrically, it's really about the same. Except there's one thing I can do that you can't:

I wash my sleeping surface.

Yes, my hammocks are machine washable. Good luck doing that with your mattress.

And even if they're not supposed to be, I haven't had any issues yet, and my most expensive hammock costs less than a cheap mattress.

And Beyond
There's probably some more things I haven't included here, either because I'm pretty sure I've mentioned them before (like how easy it was for me to sleep on a cruise boat thanks to my experience with hammocking) or because I haven't thought of them yet (I'd give you an example, but I would have had to think of it first, and then it would no longer qualify).

The only thing that's gotten harder is getting out of "bed." It's just too easy to get comfortable. Other than that, the only thing I regret is not trying hammocking sooner. I could have saved myself so much tossing and turning, not just on a mattress, but all those times I went camping as a kid, where I loved every moment except the part where I never got a good night's sleep.

I certainly get one now.

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