Last night I had the hardest time getting to sleep. I was plenty sleepy and did doze off for a bit, but then I woke up and couldn’t clear my mind long enough to fall back to sleep. Even before I went to bed I knew that I was stressed out when I couldn’t figure out what to read. Sometimes I can get a bit restless and have trouble picking something to read. But this was different. I wasn’t restless so much with my current reads but almost annoyed. Don’t get me wrong I like everything I am reading right now. But all of it seemed too complicated for my mood. I needed something deeply comforting.
The last 150 pages of The Golden Notebook weren’t going to help.
Margaret Drabble’s memoir wasn’t going to help either. It is kind of a comfort book, but alas too cerebral to fit my anxious mind last night.
I am in the final third of The Dud Avacado by Elaine Dundy, but I am a little unsympathetic to the main character so I wasn’t going to find much comfort there.
I am in the first third of Miss Hargreaves
, which I am really liking, but the madcap crazy of that tale is hardly the thing to calm one down.
I ended up picking up and starting something new: The Birth of a Grandfather by May Sarton. I find her journals to be so comforting, even though they sometimes deal with big issues like her ongoing depression. At first The Birth of a Grandfather was doing the trick. The opening paragraphs describing the beginning of a gloriously long summer spent in a family cabin on private New England island seemed to be just the right level of calm for me. But then on page 3 marital complications popped up. Alas, a comforting read to help clear the stress from my mind was not to be.
In the past E.F. Benson’s Mapp and Lucia books were a sure fire way to calm me down and make me forget my troubles. But I don’t own any of those.
So in the end I just stared up into the dark worrying about the million things on my mind.
What do you read when you need your mind to shut off?