Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf

For the last couple of years, I have been suffering crushingly debilitating insomnia. It has been going on for so long, fatigue is my new normal. I’ve tried all the tips and tricks but given my current circumstances, I need to let it be what it is, in the hopes one day it will dissipate.

This book is poignant to me in that I read it solely at night. And by night, I mean the witching hour of 2-3am when I usually awaken for seemingly no rhyme or reason with dearth hopes of immediate slumber. For a while I decided reading would be the best elixir to induce me into a blissful and nocturnal bliss. In truth, this strategy saw mixed results.

But through my battle against the great unsleep, I found this tale to be an exquisite comfort. It’s sweet. And beautiful; beguiling. And a stark reminder that intimacy and companionship are important at any age.

One evening, 70-year-old widow Addie visits her long-time neighbour, widower Louis, with an unusual proposal. She suggests that they platonically sleep together to provide comfort through the dark hours of loneliness. Addie and Louis are challenged by their respective family members who are bewildered by this newly-formed and yet increasingly co-dependent relationship. I thought this little story was gorgeous. Life-affirmingly so. Like Addie found her Louis, I found my insomniac antidote, if only for a few nights.