Tickets are cheap to the amusement park of my life. I call them my audience, but the people walking through call themselves my friends; I think we’re both wrong. Most of them arrive, only to leave as fast as the fun runs out. They walk by the rollercoaster, my white knuckles blurring by, but they quickly turn away pretending not to notice the lonely line. Most of them head for the twirling teacups, this line overflowing, disguising their desire for fun with expectation of my presence.

…and then there’s "her"

She steps out from the onlookers, mazes her way through the empty line, and patiently waits ‘til I slow down & let her on. Sitting next to me, she feels the catching speed I've been victim to, but she toughs it out; loyalty against the empty boxes trailing behind me. Once around, twice around, she's been let in on every sharp turn, every jolting corner, and every breathtaking drop on my emotional ride, yet she doesn't try to pull me off. She knows the teacups aren't far, she can even spot the gentle carousel as we wiz by, but she also sees through the fake smile I'd be forced to wear on those rides, as nausea would follow my day. So..... she sits next to me, and we just ride.

She looks over at my tense body, eyes squeezed shut, holding my breathe as click, click, click,! My tears dry from the gushing speed as the seatbelt pinches the butterflies in my tummy, shoving them into my throat. We hit the bottom and continue speeding along the screeching railway.

Reaching over, she takes my hands off the cold metal handle-bars, and my knuckles fade from white through my skin. Feeling my hand in hers, I unclench my tightly closed eyes, and her encouraging smile releases my long held breathe. Our seats creep up the slope of an oncoming drop, and she holds up her arms in the air, telling me it's okay. I'm afraid, my stomach is in knots, but trust prevails as I remember the protecting love she’s shown me all our lives. Curving over the peak, my body relaxes as if I had been gripping my strength with every last muscle in my body ...and down we go. I hear her laughter as we descend with warping speeds, and my scream turns from piercing fear, to an ensemble of joy, and I feel the air wisp through my fingertips high above our heads.

A person's beauty lies in everything that manifests in their life, even the lament of their soul's sadness. My amusement park would be less beautiful without the occasional perilous roller coaster, and she sees that. Everyone waits for me at the twirling teacups, and the rainforest cruise, but she supersedes my loneliness and hops in next to me. It's hard to see beauty in an emotional rollercoaster, but it is genuine devote love which reminds us of the easiest way off: embracing the ride.

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