at the age of almost adult, passing through australia, aaron and i came across a ferris wheel tucked away like a secret garden near sydney’s harbor. in the middle of a weekday, it was just us.
delighted with the all to ourselves discovery, we settled on to slippery, hard seats…locked into safety for our ride. once, twice around and the operator found the obligatory pause. for the thrill of height, for the view’s sake. it was expected.
but suddenly there was tilt and swing and i began to slide. the bar’s safety lost all meaning. i braced legs, awkwardly pushing as muscles cramped. trying to stop but gravity was a siren and my body kept moving toward her. aaron grabbed me pulling back hard. fingers digging into my arms, both of us fighting the downward drive. urgency left no thought for words and strain took away breath to cry out. only minutes but no rescue until the wheel met motion again and level gave us permission to let go.
on ground, bruises already bloomed under the skin of my legs and arms. the surprise and fright of it required we laugh and wonder out loud to shake them off. make it less than.
but it reminds me that we are designed for this:
a desperate grab to break another’s fall.
snatching out of harm’s way.
stopping to offer.
bracing to fight the slide.
chopping silence into pieces however awkward our first swings are.
we are designed for the reaching out. not this folding in upon ourselves.
less room to take in. less to pour out.
we were not meant for avoiding-eye’s-contact-someone-else-will-i-don’t-know-if-i-should-what-will-they-think-am-i-the-right-one-for-the-job.
strain….push….hurt. get to one another.