The Things We Do For Love

Rollercoasters. Hete ’em. Not a little, but a god awful lot. With enough intensity if mi familia’s watching one of those Discovery channel shows that’s supposed to explain rollercoasters and why you won’t die in scientific terminology, I either leave the room or ask them to change the channel. I can watch Dr. G do autopsies, but, Lord help, keep me away from rollercoasters.
My first year advising publications (class of 95), I took my kids to Six Flags on our night out from summer camp. That camp was amazing. It was UTA and Bruce Waterson was the teacher, and I was so excited to finally be a newspaper adviser. The kids wanted to go to Six Flags, it was right down the road, so Six Flags it was.
It was easy. I had a season pass.
I had a Six Flags season pass, even though I HATE rollercoasters.
See back in the day I didn’t get to go to Six Flags or Dallas or, heck, I didn’t even get to go to the mall in Wichita Falls. I’m not sure why exactly, but our free time was always going to Grandma’s. Wouldn’t trade those memories for anything in the world, but when I told my future husband I’d never been to Six Flags, he thought it was a little like saying my parents had forced me into child slavery. Thus the season passes. Which, by this time, we’d had three years.
And every time we’ walk into the park, I’d get a little sick to my stomach. My knees would shake. My feet would sweat. You get the picture.
AND still…even though I HATE rollercoasters, I’d find myself in the line for The Judge Roy Scream, The Texas Giant, the Mine Train. And I’d dread those long waits, and I’d talk about maybe not doing it. And my husband would cajole, and I’d get to the front of the line, my eyes would tear up as that one last chance to escape would pass me by, and on the rollercoaster I’d go.
I think I actually cried waiting for the Texas Giant.
And then the rollecoaster would take those spins that rattle your teeth and dips that leave you breathless and I’d still be sitting in the seat dreading what was to come the BIG drop.
Finally we’d get to the top and I’d close my eyes because the drop scared me too bad to watch.
Only when it was over, the drop was amazing. Peaceful almost, compared to the bouncing around on the rest of the ride.
Strange.
I haven’t thought about those Six Flags days in years. It’s been 9-10 years since we’ve been. But the camp director was talking about chaperone’s for the Six Flags buses and asked if I’d done it before, and instead of a polite no, my response was Oh Dear GOD, no, I hate Six Flags.
Later as I thought about it, I wondered if that was exactly true or not.
I’m not going to find out this year. When people go to Six Flags, I’ll be at the mall, shopping. 🙂

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