Floor or Bed?

I'm considering sleeping on the floor...no really, hear me out. So this all started because the bed i currently sleep in and the spare bed actually belong to my ex (and his ex fiance, hows that for baggage). So needless to say they are being packed up and shipped out when he eventually gets another place. I have spent the last 3 months wondering what im going to do for a bed. I really just don't like the look of any i have seen and those that i do like are hand made in the $10,000 range, nopesville.

So i was considering just plonking a mattress on the floor for now but even then i have to fork out a few thousand dollars for a mattress. I don't even know how i came across the idea but i suddenly thought, Futon. Not the fold down lounge variety from the 60's. The actual padded bed on the floor Japanese style. This has several benefits including only costing around $700 inc delivery. Not to mention no heavy ass mattress and bed frame to assemble and move every time i move (which is currently at 13 times in 10years). But i was hesitant. Is this just way too hippy? Too strange, who sleeps on the floor?! I can see it now, my dad comes over and asks why i don't have bed, its in the cupboard dad, its a futon. Dad sighs, i can buy you a bed, we will go to the shop right now. No dad i wanted one, you're not sleeping on the floor ill go get you a bed just pick one...you get where this is going. Not to mention the prospect of bringing a guy home and having the same bewildered look, but wheres the bed? So i did some more research, looked up pictures of what the modern futon will look like in my room, why we even made bed frames in the first place, and here's what i have come up with.


The first examples of beds were found in Egyptian tombs, they were short as wood was rare and were sloped down with a foot board to stop you falling off the end (thats why we have bed head and bases today folks). they were generally bits of rope woven and tensioned to support a mattress of fabric stuffed with straw. Those who weren't royalty slept on the floor on blankets with the rest of their family, privacy is a modern concern folks.  


Now the reason these beds were off the floor is a practical one, so that mice didn't bite you while you slept, or your bed didn't get wet when it rained. Makes sense right? The day bed was invented by Romans who were really lazy and preferred to do everything laying down, reading, talking, eating. Poorer people would carry their mattress (a sack) around and just use the straw on the floor to stuff it, literally 'making their bed', before picking a nice bit of floor to lay on or something like a shelf again because of rats.  It was the kings and queens of the 14th century who made the modern day bed fashionable and it was really to keep warm hence the curtains. The Chinese had similar ones which were used for lounging on during the day also so were a very main piece of furniture in the home.
Modern beds came about with the invention of rolled steel with a head and base added as a nod to the royal bed. Really they were just a platform to raise the bed off the floor and water etc.





So now we come to modern day. We have heating and cooling. No rats or water in the home. Why are we still using these things?? 40% of Japanese still use floor beds. The health benefits are many actually. You know when you throw your back out and sleeping or laying on the floor is the remedy, but then when its better we go back to the bed...hmmm  the reason is when you lay on a hard surface your bones push your body back into alignment. The first night yeah it wont be the most comfortable because you are used to the bed eating you and wrapping around your body. You cant move around because you sink into it. On the floor you body realigns, your curved shoulders snap back, your spine re aligns. The reason its not so comfy the first week or so is that we have lost the muscles necessary to hold this posture. Like any new exercise we have to re build those back muscles that will support your sleep, and your posture will thank you for it!

But lets also talk mattresses. The common mattress gets heavier the longer you have it, because its growing bacteria, ewwww. Your mattress literally has a 2kg colony of bacteria in it...just let that soak in, literally. The Futon is made of cotton and is light enough (about 3-11kg) that you can throw it over your balcony or railing and let the sun kill all that bacteria. Bash it with a stick every month or so to get all that dust out and these things are super sanitary. No dust mites, no skin cells, no bacteria farms.

In terms of modern day floor beds this is actually taking on for children because sleeping on the floor means they cant roll out of bed so have alot more freedom of being able to get in and our of bed from a young age. Alot of people are also going back to the family bed where everyone sleeps in one big bed. Some people say its cruel for little children to be made to sleep alone and really i can see their point, sleeping alone in a dark room and only screaming out will bring help and a hug. Who wants that? I loved sharing a room with my sister as a kid as we could talk all night. Why does anyone under the age of 15 need privacy? Your asleep. I know being a single lady living alone i get scared and would love some company most nights so why not allow our children the same comfort of having mum and dad in arms reach. There are other times for 'affection' rather than bedtime haha


So i think i will embrace the Futon floor bed, cheaper, healthier, better for your back and alot easier to move. Win win win.

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