I'm so glad we're going to Six Flags to celebrate your birthday, Maya!
Let's go on that ride that launches you 200 feet into the air!
As Maya surveys the situation, the receptors in her control center/brain send signals to activate her sympathetic nervous system.
I'm so nervous! My heart is racing and I feel like I might be sick...
Maya feels unsafe, so cortisol and epinephrine are released into her system, which triggers an increase in heart rate, breathing rate, etc.
THIS IS SO SCARY!!!
You screamed so loud! Did you like it?
I feel good now, but I can't stop shaking!
Her parasympathetic nervous system is now beginning to act to calm her down.
Now that she perceives no danger (which is an afferant signal), Maya's control center sends efferent signals to her heart to slow it down. Norepinephrine is the effector secreted by her adrenal glands that allows this process to take place.
How do you feel now?
I feel normal again. I'm not shaking anymore, and I can breathe better!