Higher and higher we climb. The thick chain clunking beneath the carriage lets me know that we're not quite at the top yet. Wind begins to swirl around and dance through my auburn hair. It feels so nice in spite of the adrenaline that is coursing through my veins. For a brief moment I wonder if we will ever stop climbing. My heart continues to beat out of my chest as the world suddenly turns silent. From up here I can see for miles. Over the treetops and rides below, people look like ants on the ground: funny, strange, busy. A beautiful deep blue sky frames everything.
And then, ever so slowly,
My grip on the side bars tighten and my knuckles change colour. Accelerating at warp speed, the world suddenly becomes a blur as I'm lost in the velocity. Head pushed back into my seat, we spiral and turn and rattle and shake. Faster and faster we go.
It is just before we hit the loop that I notice some people in front of me with their arms raised high above their heads. A scream of excitement rings out from them and with a deep breath, I too let go. My hands float high as wind rushes through my fingertips.
I realise in that moment that I am laughing. And on we travel, tipping and turning around every bend. I feel so light, free.
After one last exhilarating dip, we begin to decelerate and pull into the platform once again.
With the safety harness released and lifted up off my torso, I step out of the carriage and make my way down the wooden steps. My mind continues to race at a hundred miles an hour.
As I look over my shoulder at the place we've just been, high above the earth, I can't help but think about the times I've tried to hold on so tightly to things before. The fear of losing people I love is palpable.
But that's the thing about life. We grow, we change, we laugh, we cry. Things don't always go smoothly and we can't control everything. But as long as we keep our hands and hearts open, safety harness or not, we are always going to be ok. Everything that is truly meant to be, happens in its own time and place. And whether we hold on tightly to the bar or wave our arms up in the air, there will always be bright new beginnings waiting just around the next bend.