Day 30 of my 30-day challenge to exercise and meditate for 15 minutes each, every day and then document my process. I woke up at 6:30 a.m. this morning to get ready to go to Adventureland. A friend picked me up for the two and a half hour drive. Right before my friend arrived I got a group text from other friends we were meeting there and it looked like we had a 90% chance of rain. Last night we only had a 50% chance of rain but by morning it looked like 90%. We debated on whether or not we should go we all had the day off so we discussed going shopping or to a movie instead and decided to just head up to Iowa City to make plans. I had made a peanut butter sandwich on gluten free bread but I didn’t bring it thinking our plans had changed and I assumed we’d go out to eat to lunch somewhere. As we were driving up to Iowa City our friend we were meeting called and talked us into going. We thought we’d at least have a few hours to ride the rides and otherwise, our tickets would probably go to waste. We all agreed to chance it and just drive straight to Adventureland theme park and water park.

It was a cloudy overcast day. We continually checked the weather to see what our odds were but the rain kept getting pushed back further and further. There was a light mist most of the day but it was actually kind of refreshing like being in a misting tent. A few times it rained for only a few minutes but it quickly stopped. It made me a little nervous to be riding the rides wet and I wasn’t sure if that would have an impact on their safety but there didn’t seem to be any problems that I heard of.

I am afraid of heights. Luckily I’m tall and don’t have to use ladders often. I also LOVE skydiving. I’ve been skydiving three times and I am still afraid of heights. That either tells me it can’t be cured or I just haven’t faced my fear enough times to concur it. I also love zip lining. However, I really am not a fan of roller coasters. I don’t like the jerky motions and I also don’t like the falls. I know kind of a contradiction but I am who I am. I talk myself into going on rides to please one of my friends. I don’t want her to have to go on rides by herself so I forced myself to go. I wouldn’t say I have fun but the way I looked at the theme park today was I plan to face my fears.

The theme park just set up a new ride called the monster. It goes straight up and then goes straight down. It looked scary as Hell. Three out of the five of my friends that went decided to go on the ride. I was included in one of the three. The great thing about the weather is that there were very few people that came to the theme park, which made for very short lines if there was even a line at all. The Monster, however, did have a little bit of a line. Not only that it gave you plenty of time to look at people go on the ride. It also gave you ample time to try to talk yourself out of it. As I watched others go on the ride I took long deep breaths. I also stated over to myself it’s less than one minute long. It will be over very quickly. I also told myself it will be good to conquer my fear. I did a quick little meditation as I was in line. Then we were quickly getting on the ride. I expressed how grateful I was there was a long line for the ride as I needed time to work myself up to get on it.

My friends decided they wanted to ride in the front so I asked to be in the middle. I wanted support on both sides of me. I also was so grateful there was a little place I could place my feet to brace myself. As I do in all rollercoaster, I tend to slouch down and secure my legs against the seat in front of me and brace my arms so if anything happens to the ride my body is secure in the seat. It seems to comfort me thinking I’m extra secure. As we rode the ride straight up into the air, I closed my eyes and took deep breaths to calm myself down. I tried lowering my heart rate and told myself it would be over quickly. As we got to the top I told myself if I’m going to face my fear I actually need to face it and open my eyes. I opened them and I screamed my freaking head off. The deep breathing was gone. It was sharp, high pitched screams that didn’t stop the entire ride. It was a smooth ride and I was grateful for that and for the quick speed it was able to get through the ride. I was happy I did it but I wasn’t about to do it again anytime soon.

I rode on a few other rides but then I rode the dragon. I remember it wasn’t my favorite ride. As soon as I rode it I remembered why. You weren’t very secure in the seat and you get thrown around in it. I hit my head and my ear and I felt like I got screwed very uncomfortable with my head continuously banging against a wall. Not fun or something I would like to repeat again. I would say I didn’t enjoy the dragon at all, and my neck was fucked up for the rest of the day. The only ride I rode on after that was the Raging River and the other water one I can’t seem to recall the name. The water rides are fun and also refreshing on hot days.

Overall I walked constantly through the theme park. So I’d say I exceeded my fifteen minutes of exercise. I was also very lucky to have such a great group of friends to go to the theme park with me. Everyone had at least one partner to ride a ride with them so those that didn’t want to didn’t have to. It worked out perfect. I also got to sit out a few rides by myself and had some non-stress-related meditations during those quiet times. There also were so few people at the theme park. We were so lucky to have such an amazing day with virtually no lines on any of the ride, with the exception of two rides where the lines only took us about 20 minutes to get to the ride. We also got very lucky on the weather. We really couldn’t have asked for better weather. It really is funny how the day worked out we almost canceled altogether due to the weather and the weather turned out to be great. I’m really glad one of the friends that went talked us all into going. Even if my neck got fucked up I really had a wonderful day with amazing friends.

So that concludes my challenge for 30 days. I would say I was successful at the meditating, even if not properly, I achieved that each day. I was successful in exercising each day for generally more than 15 minutes each day but if anything at least 15 minutes so that is a win. I think I changed my goal a few times but I got distracted and don’t know if I really followed through. I probably should have created a list or something when I changed it to follow through. Note for next time. I also wrote about each day but I failed on writing each day. I used the excuses of not being able to due to not having the means on some days. Then, I would get behind and it seemed to take way too long to catch up. So there could be an improvement in the daily writing however, I did finish so yay for that.

I know I have room to grow but I am proud I finished this. I still need to work on my editing but as is life. I tried talking myself out of this time and time again. I even thought about lying a few times, however, I don’t lie. There really isn’t any point to. I also, tend to rat myself out anyway so better just to tell the truth then you don’t have to remember anything. I am so grateful to those of you that followed my journey. I will continue to share my experience and journey to finding joy and I look forward to hearing about yours.

Thank you again.