How do I love thee — A Sonnet by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

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Happy 23rd anniversary, handsome husband! I’m still in love, after all these years.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside The Dana-Farber

Dana Farber lobby

There is no place quite as “inside” as inside a cancer hospital. Quiet, orderly, pastel. Everyone is subdued. Everyone waits. No one talks much. We’re all just waiting. If you are in the hospital, you or a loved one has cancer. Or you had cancer and are back to make sure you don’t have it again.

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This does not make for lively conversation. I always bring a camera with me so that while I wait, wait, and wait some more I can take pictures.

A Secret Love

See on Rarasaur. My first guest blog! 

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I confess, though I will celebrate my 23rd wedding anniversary tomorrow, I have another love in my life. It is no passing infatuation. It’s the real thing. Deep, true, forever. Undying.

It’s been the center of my world for more than a decade and I’m still as cow-eyed and misty with passion as I was at the start of this romance. My husband understands and we share my love between us, making an odd threesome perhaps, in some eyes. But to us, it’s the way it ought to be.

Better than anyone, he knows this relationship gives me something he cannot. It has been part of our lives longer than anything else — other than each other. Almost as long as the house in which we live. You might think after so many years, familiarity would lessen the passion I feel at the thought of the touch, the warm embrace. Yet my love is as strong as ever. Maybe stronger than ever.

In some ways, it was love at first sight. From the moment three brawny guys hauled those humongous heavy boxes into the bedroom and assembled it in place, my passion for our adjustable bed has been unceasing, unrelenting.

My adjustable bed. Ah, The Bed. With the wonderful pure latex foam mattress that cradles my sore spine, supports my aching hips. Rises up to let me watch television, use the computer or read, then settles gently back with the push of a button.

When first The Bed came into our life, Garry didn’t get it. Then, one day, shortly after having rotator cuff surgery, he looked at me. He said, with a quaver in his voice and a tear in his eye: “I love this bed. I really love it.”

I nodded. Yes. I understand. Because I love it too. When we are away, no matter where we are, no matter how luxurious the hotel or the guest room may be, we long for our bed. There is no other place on earth where we are completely comfortable.

The best moment? When we get home from vacation and finally, after unpacking all the stuff — there’s always more stuff after the holiday than you packed in the first place (how is that? it’s as if it reproduces in the trunk of the car) — we nod to one another and adjourn to the bedroom.

We climb into bed and like a couple of cats, we nestle. We look into each others’ eyes. We sigh. “Aah.”

We smile. We say, in chorus: “Oh, I LOVE this bed.”75-GoodNight-CR-66

Sneer if you like. Hug your cell phones and computers. Brag about your high-definition television, your stereo system. Nothing you say about your camera, car, newest totally cool gadget can match the intensity of our love for The Bed. Oh blessed day I bought you, my bed. My friend.

Twice in its life, The Bed has failed to respond to the control. The first time, I nearly went into cardiac arrest. I went online and found the original manual, inadvertently discovering that my bed is under warranty for life anyhow (I didn’t remember that) … and discovered I needed to reboot the bed. Which meant unplugging it, counting to 10, then plugging in back in. All fixed.

It isn’t natural to feel this way about something inanimate, but … it’s my guilty secret. And if you have an adjustable bed, you understand. The rest of you … I hope someday you too can experience a passion this profound.

I think I’ll go lie down for a while. My bed is calling me.

Some additional information:

This bed is an AdjustaMagic. We bought it when the company had just opened for business, so it was really reasonably priced — about $2500 for the bed with a nice, finished base and the most amazing full natural latex foam rubber mattress. Breathtakingly comfortable. A dozen years later, AdjustaMagic is a luxury brand. The mattress would cost more than the entire bed cost when I bought it in 2001.

But do not despair. There are many more brands than there used to be and local bedding places have sales. My best friend just got one for her birthday (what a good husband she has!!) and the mattress is one of those sleep number inflatable ones made for an adjustable bed — the whole thing came in for around $3000. Minus some decorative stuff, but you can pay that or more for a regular bed.

These beds are wonderful for sleeping but also for other stuff. You can finally watch TV, read, or use a laptop comfortably. In bed. It’s a life changer for anyone with asthma, a bad back, breathing problems of any kind … or people who want a bed that’s genuinely comfortable. More than okay. Wonderful.  It makes a huge difference in the quality of life, one of the few improvements in life you can buy with money.

I love my computers too. And our car. I love our reclining love seat and our amazing Sennheiser wireless earphones … but OH the bed. It’s so deliciously tactile!!