7. The Rocket-ship: Write about a rocket-ship on it’s way to the moon or a distant galaxy far, far, away.
I was a camp kid. Not a science camp where we actually built our own rockets but the normal, rustic kind. A place with terrible food and kids reeking of chlorine. Camp was a place to build your self-esteem, to have no obligation other than to have as much fun as possible for a week. It was the kind of place where you learned life lessons without realizing it, but couldn’t exactly point out how that happened. Maybe it is because the most valuable experiences are often unexplainable.
I remember standing in the grass area between the dinning hall and the chapel. A space normally reserved for ultimate frisbee or volleyball, but that day it was set up for what we called “theme” class. Normally a class that we all ignored but today there were water balloons. My memory is a little hazy on the details but the gist was that the water balloon was supposed to represent a stressor in our lives. Something that we found to be very troubling and we were supposed to take whatever it was, place it in the provided sling shot, and launch it into the air to symbolize letting go.
Like I said, theme class was typically ignored. Before the teacher could even finish kids were demanding to go first, and soon after the activity erupted into chaos. I couldn’t tell you now what my stressor was. Probably something petty or something not really worth being worried about at all. What I can recall is that it is some type of indescribable joy to send something shooting off into space, and watch it erupt. It is that weird satisfaction you get when destroying something on a smaller scale, like knocking over jenga blocks or stepping on a sand castle.
It’s a nice concept, letting go. Being able to take everything wrong and fling it far, far away. As an adult the problems seem to grow bigger and suddenly water balloons just won’t seem to cut it. For adult-sized stressors you need adult type equipment. If the stressors or frustrations were tangible I find that I wish I could round them all up, pack them into a rocket ship and send it into space, never to be heard from again.
Wouldn’t that be amazing? If we could all have a turn at our own personal rocket ship. The use would not be to send men or women into space but it would be our problems that we would send into the atmosphere. Imagine if you could do it. If you could sit in the control tower, watch the engine fire up, and have your breath catch in your chest as the count down begins to descend 5…4…3…2…1
It takes off in a flash, soaring higher and higher into the sky until it becomes a tiny dot. You can no longer see it, and when it gets far enough away it explodes into a million tiny pieces that couldn’t possibly add up to feelings of sadness or hurt any longer. If only we could let go.