Free Spirit I Believe
This summer I went to two different amusement parks; the experience was the same. While I waited in long lines squeezed between wet bodies, my eager eyes glanced up, down and across the tracks placed ahead of me. I was mesmerized by the various shapes, sizes, materials and colors used, but even more by the adventure. I asked myself, “Why in the world do I trust these things?” But after consistently watching unfamiliar expressions of all ages soar past my gaze, I proceeded on.
Finally, it was my turn. My heart raced. I identified the cause of the hard pulse as I placed myself carefully into the suspended chair: excitement. Arms of the victims around me gripped tightly to the only two bars securing them. Mine were free. As we inched along the red, white, and blue patriotic journey to the top, the loud clanking of the chains ticked like the second hand until- release- we fell off the edge into wide open expectation. I expected gravity to take control and pull me down, but I only shot higher. The wind embraced my dangling bare feet and my loose hair struck against my arms held high in the air. It wouldn’t have mattered if I was next to my boyfriend or my sister- it wouldn’t have mattered if the bars were a restriction- because I was flying. They call it a thrill ride; I call it the ride of life- and 45 seconds is all it takes.
I believe in free spirit and release. I believe in letting go and never holding back.
I dance and I call myself a dancer. But if I’m a dancer solely because I dance, then I have been a dancer since I was three. Are you a dancer because you go through the motions, or are you a dancer because you feel them?
I was in tenth grade when I first felt what it meant to be a dancer and I have never turned back. My dance teachers always tried to explain how it feels to truly dance, but now I realize how truly unexplainable it is; I’ll try. The music begins and you feel the beat in unison with the rhythm in your heart and as passion builds you don’t just do the steps, you believe in the steps and you feel the movement; your soul touches your heart and your heart moves your body in ways you never knew it could. It is a high. And as the music carries on, the high becomes stronger. You are flying. Eventually the music comes to an end, but your heart and soul keep dancing and when you finally take a second to breathe- to think- you don’t even recall dancing, only living.
I believe in the free spirit of roller coasters and the ability to release while I dance. I believe that nothing is holding me back. If I can let go- completely- for 45 seconds of the ride or for 3 minutes of a dance, then I can let go for a lifetime.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.