For a few years in my young adult life I worked in Florida at Walt Disney World. I made some amazing friends and was terribly sad to have to leave and knew for sure I would take my own kids back often… once I had kids.
Flash forward to our reality now. Money never quite pans out the way you want, and having a child with special needs has really shelved my Disney dreams. This past year I really pushed to take the kids. Jeremy is not a huge fan of the theme parks and kept nipping my plans to go in the bud (how did I marry someone who didn’t love Disney Theme Parks?!?!). He also would say that the kids are too young to remember so it’s a waste of money. I agreed with that at first but then it kept nudging at my conscious till I realized why. For years I watched others take their kids to Disney. I got to see the looks on little faces when they met their favorite character. I saw other kids freak out when they realized Mickey Mouse was life-sized and parents chuckle while calming them down. I helped create the magic of Disney vacations for years. I helped make a wish kids fulfill their last wishes with parents crying quietly behind me because they were seeing their amazing children full of joy and love. I realized then that I wanted the memories. Gwen at the age of 2 probably won’t remember meeting her favorite princess (Tiana) but I would. I would remember and to me that was important.
A oppertunity presented itself that would allow us to save quite a bit of money on the trip and this time I was able to talk daddy into it.
LET THE PLANNING BEGIN! We are headed to Disneyland in the next couple of months. Sure I’d rather go to Walt Disney World since it was my home away from home for so many years and I still have friends there but California is within driving distance so it wins and at this point I’m just so excited I don’t care!
I’ve been talking to other friends who have gone with service dogs and special needs kids and trying to remember my own training from so many years back. I used to be a pro at going to the parks and have done (on more than one occasion) all 4 Walt Disney World theme parks in one day. I’m a bit rusty at this point and adding the kids and Magpie it creates a whole new way of doing things. We have started to show the kids video’s online of the park and characters to prep for our adventure. With Deeds we have learned that preparation is key for making things a success, especially if it’s away from home and the routine of life. Sure, it may end up being a disastrous and chaotic mess but it will be an amazing disastrous mess. I still remember going as a teenager with my family and watching my mom dance in circles around main street when we got in the gates. I still gets goose bumps and butterflies when I see Mickey Mouse even after working there, hopefully some of that will rub off on the kids. A magic filled family vacation, and our first real family vacation!
Till we go we are saving our pennies and dreaming of our own magical vacation. Big thanks to my Prince Charming (and a tax return) for helping make my dreams come true. Jeremy, I love you babe!