"In the Sun
In the Sun I feel as one
In the Sun
In the Sun..."
Since high school, I've always prided myself on applying sun screen daily. In my teens I spent sun drenched afternoons riding my horse around and around a dusty ring in North Carolina. Every day before heading out to go riding, I would slather on my face gobs of sun screen.
I used to fear the sun. Running for the safety of a shady tree or being sure to walk on the shade covered side of the street. Then I learned that shade is only SPF5. I was crushed. My wrinkles deepened. Age spots revolted.
Last summer I spent my days in a hyper air conditioned office freezing. Every day I lost feeling in my fingers. Each turning pale white and tingly. It could of had something to do with the fact I was down to 89 pounds. My only chance for survival was the sun. I would escape Siberia daily for the outdoors where I'd sit for 15 to 20 minutes on a sunny bench. Slowly the feeling would return to my fingers, my shoulders would relax and I'd feel whole again.
Through my own personal search for wellness, I've learned that I have misjudged the Sun. To me it used to be an evil cancer, wrinkle blaster. Now I realize it is a life force. We are all made of the Sun. The greens, veggies and fruits we eat soak up the Sun. Even animals graze on sun soaked grass. One way or another we are all consuming Sun. Many diseases are attributed to a lack of sun, which gives us all Vitamin D. Numerous research findings point out that autoimmune illnesses are more prevalent in areas with less direct sunlight, like New York City.
In The Vitamin D Solution, the author points out that people with low levels of Vitamin D are more likely to contract the type of skin cancer that can spread. While those with higher levels of Vitamin D are more likely to contract topical cancers that are easily controlled. This fact really surprised me. That a lack of sun, as opposed to an over exposure to sun, leads to more detrimental skin cancer.
Through my own experience, I have learned the many benefits of 15 minutes of sun a day. I don't think I'll ever be a sun bather and don't think it's healthy any way. This winter I'm skipping covering my face in Clinique City Block before heading for the subway. I'm lucky if I even get 15 minutes of sun on a winter day in the city. To be sure I can catch every single ray, you'll find me walking on the sunny side of the street.