Following a “use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without” philosophy not only protects our planet’s natural resources, but it provides a pause in the consumption cycle allowing for contentment with what we have. In this series I share personal stories of making do and welcome you to share yours in the comments.
When I was pregnant with my youngest, my husband and I made the decision to co-sleep with our baby. In preparation we purchased an organic, king-sized mattress, which for the baby’s safety, we placed directly on the floor of our bedroom. Our son no longer sleeps with us, but we continued to live with the mattress on the floor. What we didn’t appreciate was that without a box spring or a bed frame, the mattress had no way of breathing and moisture was getting trapped.
This weekend my husband tipped the mattress on its side to vacuum underneath and with horror found the bottom covered in mold. Sadly, our expensive and fairly new mattress was hauled to the ally for trash pick-up. Being without a bed, we contemplated our options. We could run to the store and buy a new mattress, but I’ve pledged to buy nothing new this year. Additionally, we have plans to move in a year and a half and are diligently working to winnow down our belongings to only what we love or find useful. Oddly, moving one less mattress came at a relief. And then there is the guilt of sending such a large item to the landfill to sit indefinitely. Certainly there must be a better choice than a traditional mattress to sleep on.
My husband remembered our full-size, blow-up, camping mattress that was sitting in the closet. That would suffice for the time being. Although we’re quite snug in the little bed, we’re happy not to spend the money, further deplete the planet of it’s resources, or be burdened with another large piece of furniture. We’re happy to make do with what we have.