We have many symbols of our patriotism; the flag, the colors of red, white, and blue, the American Eagle, and the Statue of Liberty.
I have only visited the Statue once. Pretty pathetic, as I live in New Jersey. Mr. Schmitty and I, back when we were dating, took a day to explore Ellis Island and the Statue.
I couldn't wait to climb up to the top of her crown. I wanted to proudly march up those 354 steps. I wanted to peer out from almost 300 feet in the air. And I wanted to look down and exclaim how the other tourists looked like ants.
My future husband? Not so much.
I knew he was afraid of heights. I just didn't realize the depth of his phobia. That is until we began our assent up the spiral stairs.
I, being the special girlfriend I was, took every opportunity to bust his balls. I laughed and joked, at his expense, as I continued on my upward journey.
After climbing approximately 50 steps, I turned to look at my boyfriend's face. I was about to offer up another wisecrack when I noticed the color of his skin. He was as white as a ghost. He looked like he was about to throw up or pass out. He knuckles were gripping the handrail so tightly that I thought he may snap it in two.
I felt like a complete jackass.
The Statue is engineered to withstand heavy winds, however, now that I know the extent of his fear, I can only surmise that this is how the whole ordeal felt to him:
I hope one day to make it into the crown. I hope my children will accompany me.
As for their father? We'll leave him home on solid ground.