I first went on anti-depressants in my mid-30s. At the time, I was writing a lot, but I didn’t make visual art. Great things were happening in my life — I had two sweet children, a good husband, and a safer life than I’d even known. But all I could think about was the past and the sorrows of the world. I often wondered why there wasn’t more public weeping — people’s lives were so full of trouble and despair.
Once the anti-depressants started to take effect, I felt this shift in my mind. The sorrows of the world and my life didn’t disappear, but they didn’t dominate my mind. My psychiatrist got me to start giving the happiness of the world as much power as I gave the sadness. I wouldn’t have been able to do that if I hadn’t had taken anti-depressants, though. I’d have never known what it was like.
I also became hungry for color. I started embroidering, then went on to make art quilts and dolls. In the past 8 years, I’ve started drawing and painting. You can read about that journey here.
I self-managed my depression/bi-polar for the past 7 years and thought I did pretty well. I realize now that the veil that clouded my vision before was back and I wasn’t aware of how much it had muted my delight in color. Again. Today, I created a little collage about that:
I hope the overall mood is celebratory.
It’s wonderful complex world. I hope to always see that clearly.
I’m drawing daily to help manage depression, long-term disability, and life in general. If you’d like to see the beginning of this project, you can see it here. You can also follow me through WordPress or on Facebook.
Your thoughts and shares are appreciated.
5 thoughts on “Daily Draw – March 13”
You have painted yourself as grey – do you still have grey feelings? I wear ridiculous bright colours (I’m 68 so many would say not appropriate – blow them!) a lot of the time to try jolt myself into enjoying life. I have ME/CFS rather than depression, though depression can be part of it, especially when battling for state benefits here in UK. Colour is a great healer I think.
I’m addicted to hats, have fun wearing them – and it seems others enjoy too, often been complimented on my hat, even by a stranger walking by when I’m sat in wheelchair at a bus stop! Plus I like coloured shoes too. Love your drawings/paintings, but *you* need to colour up too. 😉 No criticism intended, just my probably stupid thoughts – and cyber hugs if you feel you can accept too. Best wishes from Liverpool, Maggie xxx
Thanks so much for your thoughtful response. I have a purple beret I wear when it’s chilly or rainy. I love colorful hats, too. I’m still feeling a little gray, but I started wearing my colorful earrings again this week — big red ones today. I think color is always appropriate for any age, especially as we age. I hope you have a great day!
I think I see a wistful look in her eye…and hope. I like your profusion of colors and shapes as she begins to see the colors again. Powerfully expressive.
Thanks. I almost didn’t post it. Wasn’t sure if I liked it, but then I rested my eyes for awhile, and went ahead with it. Now I’m glad I did 🙂
I too feel the weight of the sorrow of the world. If more people simply talked about it I think there might be a shift in people like us….