It has been bitingly cold lately and John has been teasing me for leaving my electric heating pad on the couch. “It’s such an old person thing to have,” he says. “It’s like having a bedpan lying there.”

“It is NOT,” I say indignantly, but it’s true there’s something a little, ah, aged about the way it looks: the flimsy fabric covering, the mouse-tail of a white cord winding its way through the cushions.

Maybe more than the thing itself is the assortment of things: my side of the couch is next to an end table where I usually have a small pile of books, magazines, my cellphone, a glass of water, and at least one crumpled-up tissue. My laptop lap desk is on the floor within reach, the special pillow that I always hold on my lap while watching TV is nearby. Now there’s the heating pad. It has the hallmark of an elderly person’s nest, this scattering of creature comforts and necessities. Every hospice patient I’ve visited has a nest, usually one next to their bed and another next to a well-worn easy chair. I’m only missing the magnifying glass and bible.

My bedside has a different set of easy-grabs: jar of melatonin gummies, hand cream, earplugs, headphones, lip balm. And really, when you think about the immense dreariness of having to stagger out of bed multiple times per night to deal with an ever-shrinking bladder, a bedpan doesn’t sound like such a bad addition.


22 Responses to “The new nesting”

  1. Stacy on December 6th, 2018 1:50 pm

    Dude I use two heating pads at work (one on my lap, one behind my back), and only one at home because I also have blankets there haha. I’m 28.

  2. sooboo on December 6th, 2018 1:57 pm

    Pretty much what my side of the bed looks like except I also have splints for my hands that I wear when I sleep. As long as I don’t have a tissue stuck in my sleeve, I’m doing okay, lol!

  3. Sara on December 6th, 2018 2:06 pm

    To me this is just living the good life. Setting yourself up for comfort and success!

  4. Ginger on December 6th, 2018 2:22 pm

    Now from a really old person, here’s what is beside my easy chair: Reading glasses, kindle, celery for dry mouth, flashlight for power outages, cane, paper toweling, half mug of cold tea, nail clippers, dog hair, and crumbs.

  5. Mary on December 6th, 2018 2:24 pm

    My heating pad is one of my best friends. And when someone highlights a new and better heating pad on IG, I am always quick to try it out. There is something so comforting about that artificial heat.

  6. Emily on December 6th, 2018 2:30 pm

    Just sounds prepared and comfortable to me! I’m 34 and also have most of those things lying around. But instead of a heating pad, I have a million blankets and a space heater. The heating pad sounds wonderful.

  7. PETE J HAIDINYAK on December 6th, 2018 2:31 pm

    I keep an afghan my mom knitted to keep me warm at the easy chair and the remote. I like things uncluttered.

  8. k on December 6th, 2018 2:44 pm


  9. Rebecca on December 6th, 2018 2:53 pm

    So, first of all — they make melatonin gummies???? YAY! Second of all — you should upgrade your heating pad to a heated throw! Sunbeam makes them and they are called “Sunbeam Heated Throw”….you want the “velvet plush” one! OMG….it’s lovely!

  10. Olivia on December 6th, 2018 5:32 pm

    I have used heating pad regularly since I was in my twenties (40 now).

  11. Valria on December 6th, 2018 11:11 pm

    I sooo understand. If the lou wasn’t a mere 10 steps away I would be considering that bedpan!

    heated seats in the car, I may or may not leave them on nearly all the time right now, just sayin.

  12. Crystal on December 7th, 2018 6:20 am

    Let me introduce you to the heated mattress pad. Mine is divided down the middle so you can just heat one side or the other, which means that my constantly arctic ass is warm and toasty without giving any extra heat to the husband.

    Sometimes when I’m feeling extra cold, I’ll use the heated mattress pad AND a heating pad on my tummy. LUXURY.

  13. Monica on December 7th, 2018 10:40 am

    We have twin size electric down comforters on our couch. You can make a lovely little nest out of them.

  14. Donna on December 10th, 2018 1:37 pm

    Second the heated throw. They’re amazing

  15. Jess on December 10th, 2018 2:11 pm

    Haha yes as someone mentioned “prepared and comfortable” and I’d like to add; “efficient and organized” but never “old”

  16. Kate Dean on December 12th, 2018 7:32 pm

    I’m ashamed of my nightstand because in addition to the normal things like a lamp, Chapstick, tissues, phone charger – I also have a perpetual pile of candy wrappers, receipts that I took out of a pocket before throwing something in the laundry, tags from new clothing items. I guess a trash can on top of the nightstand isn’t a thing I can make happen? Right?

  17. Jenn on December 16th, 2018 5:19 am

    Brilliant idea to have the heating pad on the couch. Going to go get mine now …

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