*This is a reader contribution from the wonderful Malissa Stidham.
It was family day at Sticker’s Groves and the weather was overcast with a high chance of showers and strong winds. Donnie, Andy, and I were to meet up with my oldest son Michael, Leada, and two of the grand kids. Once we were all there, it took no time at all for Andy and Cody to be the first out of the gate and heading toward the rides, leaving little Jasmine, age 7, to hang with the adults.
“I want to go on the Ferris Wheel.” Were the first words out of Jasmine’s mouth.
Ahh! The Ferris Wheel… Mommy is not a fan as she is terrified of heights. Brother Cody and Uncle Andy were already gone which didn’t matter because they were also not a fan of heights. She looks at Michael and Donnie… and after a short pause for thought… she looks at me.
Grabbing my hand, she yelled, “Let’s go Mamaw.”
And off we went a running. Now I am not a fan of heights either. However, I learned the previous year when we went to the same family day, that all it takes for me to do the things I don’t want to do, such a Ferris Wheel… are those two bright green eyes and a sweet voice saying, “Please Mamaw.”
So on the ride we went, and up at the top we stopped. Sitting there, looking down at the ground, did not do a lot for my stomach. Then the winds started. The cradle we were in started rocking and I felt the steel structure sway. Jasmine grabbed around my arm and pushed her face into me. It was clear to me that she was a bit scared. Mamaw, became a bit concerned.
“Just sit still and we will be alright.” I told her as we felt the structure sway once more. “I want off”, was Jasmine’s reply.
Jolt! The ride began to move and we were headed down… but only to head back up with the winds still blowing. We stopped again, this time next to the top. The same uneasy feeling came over me and Jasmine once again grabbed my arm and hid. Now the winds picked up and we could clearly feel the structure swaying.
“I want off”, Jasmine cried. Again, I told her to just sit still. Another jolt, we began moving again. As we went around and around, the ride didn’t seem so bad, but then… there we were stopped on the top again!
With the wind blowing, structure swaying, cradle rocking, Jasmine hiding, and me praying!
“I am not riding this again!”, Jasmine declared. “I agree”, I said in reply.
“Two more stops and it will be our turn to finally get off.”
“One more stop.”
“Yes! Now we are being let off.”
While walking through the exit gate, I tell Donnie I that I am not going to ride that thing again. He said he could see it swaying and agreed the ride should have been shut down in those kinds of winds.
All a sudden, Jasmine comes running back to me and yells, “Mamaw, let’s go again!”
Thank goodness her second favorite ride – the roller coaster, was next door.
“The old wooden roller coaster!”…
Why not I thought? I’m only Mamaw once!
[If you’d like to celebrate happiness like Malissa, you should also – write with us!]
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