Waterfalls Are My Antidepressant
A few weeks ago I spent five hours swimming beneath the forty foot waterfall a brief walk away from our casita (small home) in Costa Rica.
You can swim against her strong current and crawl up and sit on the rocks beneath her curtain of water.
I sat in a ball there and let the water rush between my fingers, toes, thighs. The water fell heavy and white upon my shoulders, my lower back, my spine. Drumming a song against my flesh.
I sat in the sun after and baked like a lizard beneath the rush and roar of water falling. The mist wandering shyly to say hello.
There are always people here. We are drawn like flies to her.
Walking back to town I felt like I had taken a deep drool worthy nap, spent an hour an a half doing yoga, had some soul stretching sex and hiked a mountain.
I felt... Clean.
I felt energized, open, cleansed, happy and calm--the most at peace I have been in a long time.
I figured it had something to do with the waterfall and googled it and found out that sure enough my good vibrations were directly owed to la cascada (thewaterfall).
It has been scientifically proven that waterfalls are good for the soul as they release negative ions.
Negative ions are odorless, tasteless, and invisible molecules that we absorb richly in certain environments.
Once ions make contact with our bloodstream it is said they produce biochemical reactions that increase levels of serotonin (the happy chemical) helping to alleviate anger, sadness, stress, depression and boost our energy.
There are tens of thousands of negative ions swirling around the base of a waterfall, on a beach and thick in the woods.
Plants also release negative ions, specifically when in places with lots of light during photosynthesis.
Not a coincidence that homes with many plants feel nicer.
It is also said that in an average office or home there is only dozens or hundreds of negative ions and some read a big fat zero.
Which is why we feel much more alive, light, clear, and stimulated outside-- playing.
I've joked for years that the mountains are my therapy.
For in canada whenever I feel unclear or held down by life unnecessarily I take off with a car full of CD's into the heart of kananaskis country and hike the nearest peak.
Something about being away, up top in the woods makes it all feel small.
I find my feet, I find my voice, I find my power.
I remember that no matter how challenging or tedious life is, clarity is just up there. And I'll be fine.
If you are stressed, anxious, sad, worn down I prescribe you one trip into the wild-- to a waterfall, beach or a peak.
And if you're not near any of those, showers will have a similar affect as the water breaking will release negative ions.
I would also like to gently make a suggestion, (and in saying that I am not speaking to mental illness), I am speaking to people who battle sadness, anxiety and moods that are sometimes a result of a lack of self care.
Before you get a prescription over the counter, try the au natural way.
Try let mamma earth heal you--she's good for it.