As a child, I must have loved something about free-falling, death-defying, neck-wrenching motion, because at the age of six I begged my parents to come with me on a roller coaster ride at Disneyland called the Matterhorn that looped its way at break-neck speed in and out and down the inside of a manufactured mountain. Apparently my parents were reluctant but I was super keen, and someone came with me and we entrusted ourselves to the scream-enducing motion of the Matterhorn.
Fast forward a number of years and I went on one of those 3D rides (specifically graded for small children) where you sit in a chair facing a moving image and the chair mimics the movement you’re watching and they blow a bit of hot air at you from time to time. After that ride I had to sit down for half an hour with my head between my knees because the motion sickness was so intense. As a kid I read Trixie Belden novels while driving in the car all over various Australian states. Now I can’t even read a map for two minutes while someone else is driving.
They say things about your ears and pressure and equalisation, but apart from medical issues and ageing, many of us lose that childhood ability to throw ourselves into experiences. You can say frontal lobe development helps us understand consequences and make better decisions and I know that’s true, but I also long for the heedlessness and joy that carry you on to new experiences where you are not in control. It may not be the wild, abandoned movement we once embraced, but gripping adrenaline-fueled times are ahead if we can throw ourselves back into motion and into each moment with renewed momentum.