I hate amusement parks. I don’t like heights. I cannot stand fast rides that throw you around at high speeds with the several times the force of gravity. They are noisy. Smelly. And have way too many people.
Nonetheless, for the past couple of weeks, I have found myself at amusement parks. And have at least two more to attend.
My beloved, #ActuallyAutistic, teen daughter, of course. She may not like all that noise, those smells, or people any more than I do. But she loves those rides. Adores everything I hate. So because I love her, I make the sacrifice to go.
Life this week has been a lot like a roller coaster. Some incredible highs, crashing into deep lows, slung this way and that, at speeds which boggles the mind.
When we went to Disneyland Paris, I challenged myself. I was going to face my fears. I was going on Hyperspace Mountain. We got there on Monday but it was too late. All-day Tuesday, I avoided it. But the stress kept building. So, the first thing on Wednesday, I took control. I faced it…with PanKwake. I held on tight, I kept my eyes open, I used deep breathing exercises, and I kept repeating the mantra…Two and a half minutes, you can do this. And I did…here is proof.
Friday was our last day…and there was one ride left that PanKwake just had to do: Crush’s Coaster. Because of her autism, PanKwake cannot handle waiting in lines/queues. But that had not been a problem. It was early November, so quiet. We had both a VIP pass and her green disability card. With the VIP one, she could go on rides alone, crazy ones like the Rock-n-Roll roller coaster…five times. But with the green card, she must be accompanied.
We had a little problem. Crush’s did not accept VIP passes. The lines were long, even early in the morning. The only solution was…I had to go on it with her. I was not prepared. I had not psyched myself up to face this one. I screamed. I yelled. Yes, I cussed too.
But I survived. And that is all that matters.
This is one of the first photos taken of Alan and I. We had been together only a couple of months when we took her to Legoland. I knew then…this was the man that I wanted to share this roller coaster of life with. To hold on tight to one another.
I know I harp on them…my Three Rules of Love and Life…
1) Life Sucks.
2) Love is the only thing that makes it worth living.
3) Great sex is the best way of showing that love.
But that is for the simple reason that is my life’s message. It is who I am as much as what I believe.
But there is something else we forget about this thing we call life. It is not a short ride. Or a short story. Not for most of us anyway. Life is an epic novel. A whole series for most of us. Some of those chapters will make us laugh. Others will make us angry. Occasionally we cry. All of that is what it means to be authentically human.
And there will always be trolls in life. People and situations that try to bring you down. Whose greatest joy is in taking others down to their level.
Don’t let them. Whether they are on social media…leave 1* reviews and nasty, unfair comments on your writing…or are your neighbors and friends, don’t let them.
Hang on tight to your beliefs, the people you love, and no matter what keep bearing your soul and putting your truth out there.