Imagine. You’re standing with friends in front of the entrance to the ride that has always terrified you to even consider riding. As your friends lead the way through the lines of the ride, you’re breaking out in a nervous sweat because you do not want to ride. After waiting in line the gates open to let you on to the ride, and get buckled into the carts. At this point your heart is racing and you’re asking yourself how I got into this situation. The theme park employees give the thumbs-up sign to start the ride and the carts start to ascend up the largest drop on the ride. You realize that your adrenaline begins to flood your body right as the carts reach the peak of the climb only to descend at a rapid rate. It seems as though time freezes and your surroundings become extremely quiet just as the carts continue moving due to momentum instead of a conveyer machine. This is the scariest part of the ride, when your senses are heightened to their maximum and your adrenaline is at its peak. At this moment, the carts begin their decent down that steep drop! On the decent, you feel as though your stomach is in your chest and your heart seems to have skipped a few beats. Once the cart reaches the bottom of the drop, you feel relief and you suddenly realize the perpetual fear you had for this ride has turned into excitement. As the ride comes to a stop to exit, you feel a sense of accomplishment knowing that you took a risk and came out on top.
Even after I rode the rollercoaster, I still never really took risks other than riding a wild ride sometimes. I never took risks. I was scared of getting hurt or into trouble. My sister’s boyfriend, Grady, always took risks. Grady was the guy responsible for encouraging me to ride the coaster. Grady got me to start skateboarding with him. Skating was a big step for me because I knew skating would require risk-taking and would possibly result in me getting hurt. Grady coaxed me to try dropping in from the top of a twelve-foot ramp. I climbed to the top of the ramp with the exact feeling I had while waiting in line for the rollercoaster. My adrenaline was pumping as I prepared for the stunt. I took a breath and dropped in. The same familiar feeling of descending down that steep drop on the coaster flooded my body and I realized, at that moment, how ridicules I was being afraid to take risks. Riding that ramp made me feel as though I was on the coaster again. I started taking risks and I became use to the familiar feelings I remember from the rollercoaster. Grady assisted me in the development of a belief that I live by to this very day, taking risks everyday.
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