Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Sometimes You Just Gotta Say Okay

Decisions can be made in an instant. Faced with a challenging decision, one usually analyzes and then acts. I am compulsive; I almost always act before thinking. This has been a habit most of my life--talking before thinking, acting on impulse, instead of directed, reasoned thought. But if you ask me to go on a roller coaster, that's another story altogether.

Last week, I went to an amusement park with DG, T1, T2 and my 18-year-old niece. She's a roller coaster junkie--the scarier the better. She wanted to conquer them all. I was the opposite of compulsive on this point. I wanted to go on the rides with her because she really wanted to go, but the twins were too little for most of them, so DG went off to the mellow rides with them. So here I was, scared, not wanting to show it, and really, a little worried about seeming a wuss in front of this sweet girl who I have adored since she was born. How could I disappoint her?

I knew logically that nothing could truly happen to me on these roller coasters. I'd scream, feel the terror, and then it would be over in an instant.

I stood in line for this one 3 times. I chickened out twice. The third time, I went using that same over-in-an-instant rationale. This ride is called the Xcelerator. It takes off at 82 MPH, goes straight up, over a hairpin turn, and straight down. I remember looking at my niece right before it took off saying, "no turning back now." I barely remember what happened after that and the next thing I knew, we were over that turn, through all the other loops and drops and the brakes were put on. "I did it, I did it!" I cheered. The whole car cheered for me too.

I think it's weird but I feel the enormous sens of accomplishment at going through these fears. Somehow, it gives me hope that I can go through lots of scary stuff and I'll be okay.

T1 and T2 were impressed with my roller coaster rider abilities too. "Will you go with me on that when I'm older," T1 asked me. "I think I can," I answered him in all honesty.

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