Bedside Chair

For years now, I’ve railed against having a chair by my bed. I’ve crankily declared it functionally useless and purely decorative at best, and temporary (or not so temporary) storage for clothes at worst.

However, I’m telling you now: I want a chair by my bedside from now until the day I die. And I’ll tell you why.

My fiancé Sal has often claimed that the chair will be useful when one of us is sick and laying in bed, and the other is sitting patiently in the chair and simply being there to show support. I have, for the longest time, scoffed at this as an emotional argument meant to be irrefutable because of its sentimental nature, and purely an exercise in justification for an irrational “I want it because I want it” scenario.

That is, until I came down very sick at the beginning of the year. Now granted, it was just a cold — I was congested and feverish and miserable, but I wasn’t dying, and I got mostly better after a week of rest and over-the-counter remedies to mask the symptoms so that I could tolerate my recuperation.

And damned if Sal didn’t plant himself in that goddamned chair when I was tossing and turning in the bed, drenched in sweat and miserable. He sat there and read while I slept in fits and turns, oscillating between feverishly hot and shivering in sweaty cold.

I even remember briefly waking at one point, when my fever had broken such that I was coherent and briefly not miserable, and snarkily accusing him of being “so fucking smug right now” that he finally proved me right about the chair.

But the truth is, in retrospect, that he was absolutely right. It was a remarkable comfort to look up through hazy feverish eyes and see him there sitting next to the bed. He wasn’t necessarily doing anything related to my recovery, except simply being there with me.

It was a tacit acknowledgement that while he couldn’t provide any medicinal benefit beyond what decongestants and cough drops could, he was damned sure going to be by my side whenever he could.

The son of a bitch was right. Though it took years to prove it so, that chair was indispensable when I needed it to be there… Even if I didn’t realize that I needed it until I found myself profoundly grateful that it was there.

So yes, I have become a bedside chair convert. Hopefully many years will pass before it’s needed for this particular purpose again, and hopefully it will never be needed for anything more serious than a briefly debilitating cold… But now every time I look at it, I find myself relieved that it’s there, and grateful that I have someone who’ll lovingly sit in it when needed.

But I still reserve the right to bitch when dirty clothes are left on it for more than twenty-four hours.

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