"Memory is a way of holding on to the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose. " Kevin Arnold from the show The Wonder Years
We spent Saturday afternoon at Playland. We had so much fun, we didn't wanted to leave. It was a full four and a half hours of family fun.
On the surface, it was a typical day at an amusement park, jumping on lots of different rides, yelling with glee or terror and stuffing faces with sno-cones, popcorn and cotton candy.
But it was also more than that. It was the first time we went without a stroller, a milestone for our family. It was a day when we got to see Sarah spread her wings and grow in confidence. She started the day slow at first, hesitant, sticking to what she knew.
Several times at the beginning of our day, she wanted to check out the swings. We watched the swings go up high and spin and we walked away. Later she decided she wanted to ride the swings, we waited in line, but at the front of the line, it was not the right time for her. As the day wore on, she decided to try again. As we chose our seats and buckled in, I tried to distract her with funny stories. As the ride started, I watched her holding the swing in a death grip and manage her terror, I got a lump in my throat. It's that time when you see one of your children frightened or scared and you want to make it all better. So I kept talking to her and making funny faces and yelling, "woohoo." While usually she is one to cry and I could see that she wanted to, but didn't.
As soon as the ride was over, she relished in her ability to complete the challenge she set out for herself, celebrated and then asked to go again.
After her foray into the world of what she called, "adult rides" Sarah didn't want to go on some of those rides that were favourites from last year, but instead enjoyed watching her brother complete his own challenges.
Playland was a lot more than an amusement park this weekend. It was a memory maker, a challenge creator, and pure joy.