Forget political party lines, I think that most individuals fall into one of two camps, those that ‘get’ Disney and those that don’t. Sure, I think there are some independents out there who waffle between the two, but for the general masses, either you feel fairy dust falling from the sky, or you feel money falling from your pockets.
I am a confirmed Disnut. Is a mouse wearing pants that appealing? Not really, but the history behind him is and what Disney World has become for my family absolutely is. I could go on and on with the history of Walt Disney and how much failure he endured to make the thriving company that lives today (in fact, I even gave a speech on this topic for a college course)- - from the first of his successful characters being underhandedly stolen from him, to surviving the economy at war time, and the rebuilding of his brands…him and his wife eating dog food because it was all that they could afford after they went broke trying to build his dreams…building a theme park for his daughters, could there be many things more romantic than all that? Walt holds for me the fascination I feel towards our founding presidents, the determination, imagination, and perseverance to hold on to something they felt was important…Ok, history lesson complete.
I believe what Disney (world in particular) has become to my family the exact thing Walt was striving for. When I first went there, I was the perfect age to believe in all the magic the park had in store…and when we went again when I was a little older; our family was at a financial state that I knew just how special it was that I was at the Happiest Place on Earth. I can remember the surge of excitement that out there, was a place that was built on the world of my dreams, where wonderful, enchanted things really happened. Every time I walk to the front entrance, my heart still skips a beat. No matter how old Cory and I got, it was the unspoken rule that while at Disney (because the rest of the kids there were with their parents too) you weren’t too cool to talk to your parents, and you found out that your sibling could still be a fun companion…before you could catch yourself, you were having fun! I will never forget our graduation trips there, having our closest friends together for the week and I was so fortunate to marry someone who got that this wasn’t just about the characters for me, this was a place where many of my favorite memories are stored. People always looked at me strangely when I explained that is where we went for our honeymoon, but for me it really was the perfect, perfect place to start a new exciting chapter of my life.
I am so nostalgic about this because we are going again in two weeks. This time, it is for me to complete the ½ marathon. (Disclaimer: I don’t plan on running the whole thing, I’m just going to soak in the experience…if I run it all great, if I walk it, as long as I finish, I’m happy. ) Jason and Owen are going down first on Monday. I cannot express how happy I am that these two are going to do this special thing together…and that Jason thought of this and planned it; get out of here with it! Anyway, then Jason’s Dad’s going to drive and meet them (again SO excited he is coming to experience it with us again. Thrilled.) Then Wednesday my mom, dad, Ava and I will board our plane and join them. This also makes me excited…going without my parents doesn’t seem right, they were part of the experience for me, and so I love experiencing it with them again as an adult. Every night at bed, I hear Owen and Jason whisper under the covers planning out which ride they are going to go on and in what order and Ava has a whole list of princesses she’s just got to meet!
Needless to say, I’m pretty excited…oh! And I can’t forget to mention, that I’ve never been there during fall so I can’t wait to experience it! Whether or not this is a tradition that my kids will take on as their own in the future I don’t know, but I do know that we are building wonderful family memories along the way, and to me, that’s a dream come true.