Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Fear Factor

Okay, so yesterday while we were at Water World I was thinking about fear. Well, not thinking about fear exactly, like I wasn't breaking it down and examining it, I was actually the one afraid. Okay, so I wasn't at first, it was Elisha who started it. Let me explain this a little better, instead of rambling, maybe I should start at the beginning, huh?

We decided to go on this ride called the Big Kahuna. Everyone could go on it as it was one ride Bethany was tall enough for. I wish I had taken a picture but basically it's this five story high terror slide water slide that twists and turns all the way down. Everyone piles into a raft and as you go down it sloshes from side to side taking you up and down as it winds its way around drenching you completely before you get to the bottom. Saying I disliked this ride is a gross understatement. I absolutely hated it, every single second of it.

Back to the beginning... again. I said yes, to this going on this ride for two reasons, 1) My kids had never been here before and really wanted to try it and 2) Because I had forgotten how much I despise rides like this and I made a decision while my brain must have been out on a lunch break.

Now on the way up as we climbed higher and higher waiting in line our son started having a minor break down. Apparently he does not like heights so much or something because he kept questioning the integrity of the structure the water slide was built on. Why is this made of wood? Wouldn't metal have been much better because it's so much stronger? What if I fall backwards down the stairs, would I die? If the rails break and I fall will I die? I'm going to stand on the platforms while you stand on the stairs because I don't think the stairs are very safe. Would you catch me if I fall? What if we slip right off the side while we're on the raft? And so set the mood for our ride. Bethany of course was elated and couldn't stand the wait. We had to keep reminding her to stay where we were and quit trying to cut in line.

So there I am telling myself when I rode this several years ago it wasn't so bad. No big deal. Just sliding down the slide on a raft into the pool of water waiting at the end. I could do this, the kids wanted to go and I did not want to wait for eons at the bottom just for them to go on it. So I stood in line and listened to Elisha and his fears and tried to help calm him, because you know as a good mommy we want our children to face their fears. And because I knew it was fairly safe what a great time to do it with us by his side. However, secretly I was right there with him. Okay so I wasn't questioning the integrity of the structure or the fact that I would most certainly plummet to my death that day (although I was beginning to think it was possible). Nope as I stood there watching the other riders on their journey southward I began to remember the ride for what it was. And I began to dread the travel down more and more as we got closer and closer.

Well, so once at the top Elisha is now thrilled and can't wait to ride and I'm wishing I can bolt. I hate these rides, I am not a thrill seeker, at least when I am not in control. I do not like roller coasters, I do not like normal water slides that are several stories high and leave you with a wedgie and I did not like this ride. Just watching the other riders brought back memories of when I rode it the last time. What was I thinking? I was being a good mommy and facing her fears for the sake of her fearful child that's what I was doing. I'm glad I was wearing sunglasses that's all I can say because I had my eyes scrunched at tight shut as they would go the entire way down and neither my adventurous daughter nor my semi-adventurous son could see it. My husband on the other hand laughed all the way down because I was the one getting soaked.

Fear, it's a funny thing isn't it? Elisha was scared the whole way up and then loved the ride itself. He would do it again, he said, even though the stairs are kind of scary. I was scared not enjoying the ride down but managed to be just fine at the end. And listening to how much the kids really enjoyed it, even though I hated it, made it worth every second... as long as I don't have to go again.

Fear, we can pull through it we try. If we venture out we just might find there is something much more wonderful on the other side. Fear, God says to lay aside our fears and to trust Him with our lives. Because when we do there's something much more beautiful than we could ever have imagined... just above those scary "unsafe" stairs... just beyond those frightening twists and turns... just outside our fears.


Meghan said...

He was questioning the integrity of the structure? That is hilarious!!

(commenting back: There was a boy in my elementary school (I will never forget this!!) who sucked on his cup until it became stuck, and when they got it off, it ripped off more than a few layers of skin, and resulted in a trip to the ER. His mouth was purple all the way around for months, and I believe he had to have some skin graphs.

As for the public bathrooms, it is kind of a theme here. I write about it often....I hate them, and my daughter is obsessed!!)

Rebecca Feldermann said...

What a great entry--funny, witty & though provoking-you have a true skill. I honestly forgot I had taken those pictures so no, I wasn't holding them hostage:) I will email them to you soon though, esp. since the one on the rock wall turned out so good. Jamie wouldn't pose, go figure.

Cheesemakin' Mamma said...

Great post! I'm with you, though, I hate those kind of rides. Josiah loves them. Yikes, I'm in trouble!