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When I first got to know my husband, I was living in Delft (where I studied), in a tiny studio apartment. I loved this place — it was my first little house completely for myself and I thought it was just perfect. It was so tiny that it would only fit a very small bed, about 90 cm (3 feet) wide — plenty of space for me though, and even my new beau fit in! You don’t need a lot of space when you’re in love…
Not even one year later, the boyfriend and I moved to New York together. We took nothing but three boxes of clothes with us. We rented a tiny little one-bedroom apartment in the then upcoming neighbourhood of Cobble Hill, and we loved this place — it was our first little house together and we thought it was just perfect. We inherited the bed of the previous owner, a lovely girl who was moving to the other coast to get married. It was about 120 cm (4 feet) wide — more than plenty of space for the two of us!
About three years later, my fiancee and I moved back to the continent. We took back a little bit more than three boxes (there were a few Eames chairs for example), but we left the bed behind in New York.
We found a beautiful apartment in Ixelles, Brussels, and we needed a new bed. My sister-in-law advised us to get the biggest bed imaginable — we were going to get married and thinking of children, and from her experience the more children meant the bigger the bed! Following her advice (better safe than sorry) we got ourselves a huge lit-jumeaux bed — the full 180 cm (6 feet) width, and we took the extra length as well — my husband is quite tall. It was enormous!
Now, nearly 5 years later, my husband and I still have this enormous bed. And my sister-in-law has been right. Every morning, two little children crawl in our bed, and the lit-jumeaux is filled with people! When one of our children is ill, we take him or her in the bed with us, and we can still sleep fairly comfortably.
Although I would never want to continuously have my children share our bed, I’m not against the idea of (occasional) co-sleeping. Because as my wise sister-in-law keeps reassuring me: it is just a phase, and in the end, they all end up sleeping in their own bed!