A continuation of my previous post: Wet. Wild. Water. Sadly, not a post about getting high.
While we were at the Kalahari over Mother’s Day weekend we not only went to the water park, but got to enjoy the theme park as well.
I like to think of myself as an adventurous daring person. In my mind, I really am. I want to seek out adventure at every turn. I’m a person who rarely says no and is always up for something new and exciting. Until I get there. And freak out. Like a place with lots of people I don’t know that I’m supposed to speak to. Or someplace where everyone is gorgeous and I’m self conscious or simply some place very high.
The first thing that I see when we walk into the theme park is the ropes course. Without even batting an eye I tell tell the H, “lets go.” So we get strapped into these harnesses and hooked up this rope attached to the metal tracks above us and we’re sent on our way. Just like that. So we climb up the stairs and get to the first obstacle. Okay, I think I can do this. It’s a straight wooden bar with a metal railing on the side. I can feel my heart pounding. But I have something to hold on to. I’ll be okay. I make it across and as I stand on this tiny metal platform with nothing to hold onto, in the air, so I start to panic. A lot. I look ahead and there’s no way I can go across there’s nothing to hold on to.
This family of four with two children Bear’s age start coming up behind us. I force the H to continue on without me so he goes across the second obstacle. And I’m still standing there waiting for them all to go ahead and the mom tries to convince me to keep going. Her kids are going across. She’s looking at me probably wondering what is wrong with me that I’m up there with my knees rattling in the first place. So I go across the second obstacle. I hold onto these ropes reaching out from one to the other as the wooden boards below me move as I walk across each one.
And then I stop.
And they keep going.
And I keep shaking waiting for each group to go by so I can just turn around and go back.
And the tears are welling up in my eyes as I’m so embarrassed watching all these people go by me.
But I can’t. I’m terrified.
So I get back down. And I watch the H from below.
And when he gets back I decide we should go on the rock climbing wall. My goal is to make it at least up to the first elephant. Mind you this elephant is probably only 7-8 feet off the ground so not even that much higher than me. And it’s hard. Really really hard. My fingers are going numb. I do however enjoy repelling. I could have bounced up and down all night.
Feeling defeated we go back to the hotel after we go on the go carts. The next morning I seem to have entirely forgotten how the evening went and we take Bear down to the theme park before we start our water activities for the day. First, the ferris wheel. Bear seems very skeptical about this having been on a ferris wheel with me before and recalling mommy gripping the sides for dear life starring at her feet. However, this is a very fast moving ferris wheel. And Bella’s there smiling it up so I have to keep up appearances.
It was not frightening, but it was the longest ferris wheel ride of my life. I think the lady forgot when she loaded us on because we went around for what seemed like at least 10 minutes.
Bear and I ride the go carts together and apparently my attempts to bypass people are labeled by Bear as me “not being in control.”
We go to the rock wall and I make it much higher than last time, but although Bear tries he never makes it higher than the first two steps up. We have to work on not giving up so easily.
Then I convince Bear to go on the ropes course with Daddy. So the two of them get all suited up and start heading up the stairs with me watching for the bottom. I however could not miss this photographic opportunity so I suit up and chase them up. Bear is terrified. I am terrified. I use him for encouragement. He makes me brave. I want him to be brave. And adventurous. I want him to have the same drive I have, but also the courage to fulfill on it. So I go across the first obstacle and wait for him.
And then I go across the second.
And this is where I turned back the last time. But I go across the third.
And then I go across the fourth and I climb up the rope stairs and I’m standing at the top of the second level thinking I could maybe actually finish this. But Bear starts to cry. He wants to get back down. And I know that I instilled this fear in him. That even though I’m pretending to be brave right now, I’ve made him this way. And we head back down and I still wish that I had just gone ahead and completed it myself. Maybe next time I will. Maybe next time he can complete it with me.
Do your kids have an adventurous spirit? Are you secretly afraid of heights but seem to always forget that?