It’s been this way for as long as I can remember. A distinct desire to break all the rules. A longing for something different. A call to the wildness of uncertainty and a pull to things beyond what was comfortable and safe. I wanted to experience. I wanted adventure. I wanted danger. I wanted risk.
I remember being a little girl and climbing the highest tree I could find in the forest and dreaming of what it would be like to jump out and soar. To fall into the wind and have it grasp and carry me high above the world I knew. I longed for a different perspective and an adrenaline high that would rush through my veins faster than I could say “freedooooooom!”. I would go from one adrenaline rush to another searching for an adventure to live, always trying to top the high of my last adventure. Whether it was cliff jumping or sky diving, hiking in 100 degree temps or through 3 feet of snow, I would hop from one daring feat to another all in search of the call to adventure.
My dad always marveled at me, taking pride in the fact that I got my adventurous side from him. My mom? Well let’s just say that she started getting gray earlier than she should have.
Now that my parents have adopted 3 kids it has been fun to watch their personalities grow and develop. Brandon, the youngest, is a bit of a fireball. He is, undoubtedly, the loudest of the three and at only 4 years old he tries his best to crack jokes to make people laugh with his crowd pleasing Sanguin personality. Bruce, the middle child, is quiet and shy. Reserved, sweet, contemplative, and thoughtful, he is always wanting to cuddle and spend quality time with people. Then there is Bionca. Oh, Bionca. The eldest of the 3 of them, she fits every stereotype of the oldest child. She is bossy and always give her opinion. She has no problem dishing out orders and totally doesn’t even begin to get the concept of not talking to strangers. She is street smart and loves to be the center of attention whether with her [wannabe] killer dance moves or Taylor Swift karaoke renditions. Truth be told, she is my mini me. I often joke with my mom and ask her if she felt like she got it wrong the first time so she is trying her second shot at parenting an eldest daughter. Because, well, Bionca is pretty much identical to how I was when I was 9 years old.
This is proven over and over to everyone in our family but never more so than two days ago when we went to Lake Compounce. All season I have been talking about wanting to ride the Skycoaster with her and Bruce. Being the last day I could take them before school started we made our way into the park and immediately went over to the Skycoaster. After pinky swearing he would go with us the next time, Bruce opted out claiming he wanted to “see how it goes” (remember the thing about him being shy and contemplative?). My dad decided to join us as well, trying to reacquaint himself with the thrill seeker of his youth. As we suited up, Bionca was totally excited and asked if she could be the one to pull the rip cord at the top. Good thing because somewhere between age 9 and 27 my danger-gauge got turned upside down. As we were slowly brought up to 8 stories above ground, hanging by a single cord, my dad and I were F.R.E.A.K.I.N.G.O.U.T.! But Bionca? She was loving every minute of it.
It’s funny to me how life slowly changes you. I still love adventure and I still love adrenaline highs, but my God, I am not nearly as fearless as I was 10-15 years ago. However, it is pretty fun living vicariously through my 9 year old sister who constantly pushes me to get back to that adrenaline junkie I used to be. And besides, my mom still has some hair left that needs to turn gray.