about the artist

Day 13



I have been having a pity party of one. I have felt depressed and lethargic and have to force myself to get up and get dressed and get on with the day. I know that part  of the reason is Seasonal Affective Disorder. I have had it all my life. When we moved to California in 1976, it went away. Then we moved to Portland and the first year we were here, I bought a happy light which I sat next to every morning as I had my coffee and checked my e-mail. I also had a Rise and Shine Wake up light which came on like the sun was rising, getting brighter over a matter of minutes. I also had the huge studio with daylight florescent lighting. I had to be careful to not spend too much time there at night or I would have a problem falling asleep.

Over time, I think I adapted to the changing seasons. Last year, we moved here to the condo which is much darker and up against a hill. Last winter was fairly mild and so the lack of sunshine didn’t seem to be a problem, but this year? Argh! Dark and rainy and miserable.

The other problem is my damn knee pain. I am in pain most of the day and wake up early in the morning with more pain. The amazing brace is helping, in fact, I am so happy when I can wear it, but I am still limited to 2-3 hours a day. The brace actually changes the alignment of my body and so even though the pressure on my knee joint is released, the rest of my body is not happy so I have to ease into time in the brace. It does seem to have a residual effect, in that I feel pretty good for a couple of hours after I take it off.

And so, starting today, I am going to try to deal with this as best I can. I have all of these symptoms  and so I will try to work on the treatment because we all know that this is just not me.


I did have a lovely end to yesterday. Wonderful Christmas concert and dinner with Lisa and Clay.

Thanks for letting me share this. It helps to get it out there.

5 Responses to “Day 13”

  1. Mary Helen in OR says:

    I have lived in the Portland area since 1964 and the gray doesn’t bother me except for severe vitamin D deficiency but my children and my sister really suffer from the disorder. Please, please use all the tools in your toolbox. Put a recliner in the studio?? Visit Portland State U and sit in the windowed walkways over the street?? Could be cold there but well lit. Don’t let the depression linger without seeing your physician. Thank you for having the courage to share this online. Keep on sharing.

  2. Gerrie, I’m so sorry to hear you are in both mental and physical pain. It’s not fair to have the double whammy. I’m sending you good feelings and hope life hits an uptick soon, so you can enjoy your holidays to their fullest.

  3. Connie MacMillan says:

    I totally, Gerrie. I get it because it’s me too. No, this is not who you are going to be forever. You are indeed one of the most productive people I’ve ever known, and you have been an amazing example to me for 55
    years. Bless you, and remember the days will start getting longer in7 days!!

  4. Janice says:

    Gerrie, we had a TV newscaster who had several famous quotes including: “It’s hell getting old” (Marvin Zindler “Slime in the ice machine!!!!)
    Could recommend moving to south Texas (Houston) ……….sun is bright today, but with climate change who knows what the future will bring……3+ inches of rain yesterday!!! I hear you about the relentless pain somewhere…..get one part of our bodies working well and another acts up………as bad as raising the kids……..get them past one stage and they develop another annoying attitude!!!! Hang in there……..

  5. Rachel says:

    Good for you for sharing. And good for you for addressing the “monster” head on! You are on of the most productive people I know…not to mention an inspiring artist. I send you all the healing cyber energy I can muster.