Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Sleeping in a King-Size Bed

I suppose the title sounds like a euphemism ("he sleeps in a king-size bed, if you know what I mean"), but it's not: over the weekend, I stayed in a hotel room with a king-size bed. I don't think this is the first time for me, but it's certainly the one of the very few times (and the only one I can remember). At home, I sleep in a full bed, so a king mattress is both taller and wider than my own.

That's a nice bit of extra space. But I found the extra width really messed with my head. Lying in the center, I found that I couldn't simply take my glasses off and set them on a nightstand. I had to roll one complete turn to my left or right, then extend my arm. And I couldn't shake the fact that I had a lot of extra space, so I had visions of wife, children, and dogs in order to feel like I wasn't sleeping extravagantly.

But extravagant was the best word for it. I was in a room by myself, when much of the band was sleeping two, three, or four to a room. I pay for the privilege, of course, bearing the entirety of the fee that could have been split. But I do it not for myself, but for other people.

That sounds like a very self-sacrificing statement to make, considering I have acres of bed space and a bathroom to myself, but I do it because I snore. Over the last five years, I've been on many band trips and this problem with sleep apnea has been along for the ride. It's really not fair to the people I room with, in the same way I felt when sleeping in the room with a snorer before I had the problem.

Living alone shields me from the problem. Nobody is there to wake me up or tell me at breakfast "you snore a lot." In fact, I've even started dealing with it in relationships fairly early, because it IS a thing that happens. Unfortunately, I also won't know when it improves, either. My CPAP machine doesn't give me a report card in the morning with regards to decibels or missed breaths.

Even the CPAP machine isn't quiet. It just trades the snoring for a regular whoosh of air, that sounds vaguely like going "FFFFFFFF" with a fair amount of pressure. Some people don't care, but others find it just as objectionable.

So I ostracize myself a bit on these performing trips, when I can. Even if it means spending more money - in this case, about $200, as opposed to $50 per person for a 4-occupancy room.

There's also the matter of being only mildly drunk and awake enough to assist an incapacitated guy a few years back. I cleaned up vomit, rinsed clothes, changed trash bags, and generally made the night an extension of a workday. I've had fewer such circumstances since I became my only roommate.

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