When I go on a roller coaster or scary amusement park ride for the first time, it’s like I’m making a life or death decision. I go through a wide variety of feelings and stages.
I start out convincing myself that I will be perfectly fine. I’m super positive! At this point, I’m actually a bit excited about getting on the ride.
It doesn’t look too scary. I mean, what could go wrong? It’s been tested hundreds of times! The whole ride is what, three minutes? I can handle that.
Then as the line slowly creeps forward, my anxiety starts to increase. Now I begin rambling, just talking and talking. I start to ask questions to whoever isn’t annoyed by me yet, hoping their answers reassure me.
I mean that drop isn’t that steep, right? Do you think I can handle it? If you were going to compare this to another ride I’ve been on, which would it be?
By now, we are 3/4 of the way through the line and my anxiety is about to boil over. My heart is pounding, but I refuse to chicken out! I suddenly become very quiet. So quiet, that when asked a question, I simply nod. I’m afraid if I open my mouth, I’m either going to cry or throw up.
I can do this! I mean look at that kid in front of me, he’s got to be like 7 years old. If he can do it, I can do it. I’ve come this far, I need to be an adult and just go through with it.
Finally we come to our turn to board the ride. I take several deep breaths and settle into the seat. I triple check the seat belts and lap bars because I don’t trust the quick tap through that the 18 year olds who are either bored out of their minds or hate their jobs perform. Once the ascent begins I realize that there is no turning back, and I try not to look over the side at the long
fall way down. I succumb to the adrenaline, open my mouth, and scream.