June 26, 2009
I’ve never been a big fan of roller coasters. Oh, I’ve done my share of twisting and dropping and screaming…but not by choice. I did it because I was a youth leader and I had to. Well, I don’t have to torture myself anymore, so I choose not to. I haven’t been on one for quite a few years.
We took a day trip to Six Flags in Vallejo on Saturday. The kids were pumped–they always are. They love roller coasters and Ted has always been the good sport to go on all the rides with them. (Ted and I each have different strengths and weaknesses when it comes to doing things with our kids. I’m the one who does the midnight showings or watches SYTYCD with the kids. He’s the one who does roller coasters!)
But this is one time the kids were determined to get me on a roller coaster. They begged and pleaded and assured me that they really are fun and I really will survive.
And I continued to say no. (I know what you’re thinking…she’s a wimp, chicken…well when it comes to roller coasters, you’re right!)
The first ride they headed for when we got to Six Flags was Medusa. And I still said no. But as I sat and waited for them to go on the ride, holding all their stuff, I observed another roller coaster close by called “Kong.” It had its fair share of twists and turns upsidedown, but the drops didn’t seem too bad (I really really hate drops!), so when my family came out of Medusa, I announced, “Let’s do Kong.”
My kids immediately gathered around me. They found a locker so we could store our belongings. They encouraged me as we waited in line. They asked me how I was doing, patted me on the back. It was bad enough that I was scared to go on the stupid thing, but having to wait in line for 45 minutes and think about it was even worse.
This is a very stupid idea. This is a very stupid idea. This is a very stupid idea.
But what’s the worst that could happen? I reasoned with myself. I won’t fall out, I won’t die. I will just hate it. Or maybe, just maybe, I will love it and suddenly become a fan of roller coasters.
Well, I am here to report that’s not gonna happen.
I survived Kong. I guess you could say, I conquered Kong because I faced my roller coaster fears and went on the ride. But it was the longest 90 seconds of my life. I ask you, what is so fun about hurtling through space, jerking, twisting, dropping, looping and feeling as if at any second I might be thrown out of the cart? NOTHING!
I wish I could write a nice “happily ever after” story claiming how I conquered my fears and now I have discovered a new love of roller coasters. But unfortunately, I am right back where I started: I remain a non-fan of those behemoth rides and sincerely doubt I will ever resolve my differences with them.
But I’m glad I went on the roller coaster just to show my kids that I was willing to try something I sincerely disliked and harbored a certain measure of fear toward.