There is no other word to sum up my emotions as I slowly climbed step by step, higher and higher towards the summit.
Below me my husband and three children waved on crying out words of encouragement. Waves of worry fluttered over BB’s face as she watched her mother ascend up towards the sky further away from her out reached arms. He who helped create them smiled as he yelled “you can do it.” But behind his smile I could see the doubt, I could see he thought I might not survive this trip.
Finally I reached the top, shivering with both cold and fear, I turned my round chubby body, coated only in a support enhanced swimsuit to the lifeguard beside me.
“Av you bin on this before luv?” She said gesturing to the steep slide before me.
I shook my head, anxious tears threatening to expose me for what I was, a terrified, freezing, idiotic mother of three who was determined to show her kids she was as cool as Daddy.
“Just took yer chin in and lay flat on yer back and you’ll be fine.”
I took a deep breath and surveyed the sight before me. The pink mouth of the slide mocked me, its circular shape called me a scarededy cat and dared me to lay down inside it. I peered over the side of the stairwell and waved one last time to my audience below before committing myself to sliding down an vertical tube into a puddle of water below.
I caught the faint sound of chanting twins on the wind calling “go mummy go, go mummy go.”
Had I been wearing pants not a costume there was a chance that I may well have gone where I was standing.
The chap behind me, ten years younger and covered in tattoos that my kids could have inked on, nudged me and said.
“Ya goin on? Tis a long queue behind ya init. Get on then.”
So I climbed into the pink plastic beasts mouth, I laid down and in my own very slow time released my fingers one by one from the metal bar and then started to slide.
I started off slow, then quickly gathered speed, the claustrophobia of being stuck in a fluorescent pink tube overwhelmed me and I started to whimper. Suddenly the slide curved and dropped, like a bullet out of a gun I shot down, water sawing up through my feet forcing my swimsuit to ride into my rear in a slicing motion. I hit literally sixty miles an hour and almost choked on water because I was foolish enough open my mouth on a water slide so I could let out a little wail of intense displeasure.
Then bang, I landed in the puddle of water, it was over, I was alive.
And now my kids think I is well cool, and I also got to see if a thong based swimsuit was for me…
It’s not by the way; did me no favours at all…