There is a carousel at Silver beach in St. Joseph, MI.
We took Charlotte there last summer when she was still two, at the time, she wasn't sure whether this contraption was fun or not, BUT, since the middle of winter she' been talking about the carousel.
We found ourselves in St. Joe on Memorial day, I lightly mentioned Charlotte's obsession with the carousel to her great aunt and uncle, who we were visiting, and wouldn't you know it?
They had extra tokens for the carousel! So we made a quick trip to the cemetery to plant flowers for family members that are no longer with us, the weather was perfect, Charlotte took over the planting proceedings and got herself delightfully dirty and wet, once we finished planting, we determined that we had just enough time to sneak in a ride on the carousel.
When we entered the room where the carousel lives, Charlotte's little body tensed up with excitement, her face was solemn as she contemplated this contraption, deciding which creature to ride, she headed straight for the entrance, leaving us adults to decide who would go on with her.
Now, most stroke survivors struggle with vertigo, I am not an exception to this, so the last time she rode the carousel, I sat it out, a decision that I'v never been at ease with, as I want to be an active participant in her life.
This time, I decided to give it a try, I figured if I just stayed focused on Charlotte's face, the dreaded nausea and dizziness would be held at bay. We climbed onto the carousel, with her Grandpa, who was there as extra support for me, just in case Charlotte lost her grip on her horse. She selected a fancy horse named Magic, her excitement was palpable as we waited for the ride to start, I just looked into he giddy little face and told her to hold onto the brass bar tightly, like I was doing.
The the bell rang and the carousel began to move, Charlotte's face lit up with glee "whee!" She proclaimed!
My eyes welled up with tears of delight and thankfulness, because I was doing something I didn't think I could do and something I could have missed.
Even when my affected leg tensed up due to nerves, I ignored it and looked in my daughter's elated face and thanked the universe and a long list of gods for the chance to experience that moment
It's the little things, people.