Trying to get more sunlight


I’m trying to get more sunlight. 

     So… on Monday, I took a break at 4pm and went for a walk with a friend. We walked along the Santa Cruz River and talked about Thanksgiving preparations and my nerves about the first broadcast.
     The river is so pretty, I love the course sand and mesquite trees. The Santa Cruz comes down from Phoenix, breaking up into many washes and smaller rivers or rillitos all along the way. For anyone who doesn’t live here, you may be thinking about something with water running in it, but in our desert, the rivers run dry most of the year.
     We love our “River” and so much life thrives in those dry river beds: birds, coyotes, javelinas, bugs and bats. Hundreds of people walk and ride along their banks every day. And when the rain comes, all the city’s streets drain in rapid succession into the washes and the river rises 10 or 15 feet, dragging branches, shopping carts and small cars along with it. It’s a powerful thing to experience, and wonderful to see from the many foot bridges that cross the Santa Cruz.
     I remember when my mom first came to visit in Tucson seven years ago, we stood on the Mountain Ave. footbridge over the river after a hard rain. My mom, brother and I watched the coffee colored water rush by, churning and singing in its hurry to escape the city. I felt like the river matched the state of our lives at that time, churning and struggling, each trying to find our way to dry ground. Each of us had gone through a big change that year. I had just graduated from grad school and felt lonely and adrift. Standing on the bridge watching the sunset, our little family of three felt like a solid thing to cling to, as strong as the metal railing beneath my hands.
    That day, watching the rushing water felt cleansing and the setting sun nourishing. On my walk this day, it occurred to me that sun is probably too weak at 4pm to provide much vitamin D. However, with or without water the river has great healing power. As I walked and chatted with my friend, I felt some of my anxiety ease. From the river walk, you can see A mountain and Tumamoc, backed by mountains of the Saguaro National Park. So much beauty, so close to my house. I wished I went there every day. As we drove away, I felt light-hearted and cheered by the river and the mountains.
-Laura Milkins 
Host of The Depresison Session