Well, we did it. We managed to conquer the various kingdoms of Disneyworld in Orlando last week, hauling around a couple of tired and over-stimulated kids who, in my opinion, seriously don’t appreciate how much more fun life is for them than it was when we were kids. Exactly like our parents did before us. So goes the tradition.
I have to admit I enjoyed the trip much more than I expected I would, and while I don’t think we’re going to become Disney-every-year people, we might be Disney-every-two-to-three-years-depending-on-everything-else people. It really was fun.
Very few times did I roll my eyes at the constant wishful, wishy, wishing-ness of it all. Full disclosure: I did smirk almost every time someone told me to “Have a magical day!” because I couldn’t help but imagine them saying it in the most vicious tone of voice possible. Sort of like when Southern women say “Bless your heart” but what they really mean is “Please go fuck yourself.” Hey, I said I had fun, I didn’t say I was a brand new person.
Except for a few tantrums and having to strap Fozzie into a leash at Downtown Disney, I loved my job as Mommy last week. I am a somewhat strict parent during most of the year: not Joan Crawford or anything, but my kids do hear “no” more than some, and waaaay more than others. I love vacation because I get to to be the Mom Who Says Yes. Can we have ice cream? Yes. Will you go on the water slide with me? Yes. Can we wait two hours for the Seven Dwarves mine train? No. (Eh, can’t win ’em all).
I like that Disney gives you plenty of things to say “Yes” to, and gives you so many options that even a “No” can quickly be turned into a “Yes” about something else. Also, the magic bands and the Fastpass+ system made life soooo much easier. That magic band is awesome: it’s your hotel key, your credit card, your photopass for all those great pictures and your fast pass (basically, a pass to jump the line) for three rides or shows a day. You can often change the options and plans with your phone in the park. It’s pretty stinkin’ cool.
Before we went, I heard people complaining about Disney tracking people with the wrist bands, and about halfway into the trip I realized I don’t care if Disney is tracking my movements, as long as I can pay for my Starbucks without pulling out my wallet and visit Mickey without making Skywalker and Fozzie wait in line for an hour, where they pull on my shirt and poke at each other and whine about EVERYTHING. So. Worth. It. Hubs and I actually said this into the magic bands a couple of times in case Mickey was listening. If Big Brother turns out to be a cartoon mouse, I want to be on his good side.
Now that we’re back (and no longer wearing our magic bands, you’ll be happy to know), the hardest part has been adjusting to life at home where there isn’t non-stop entertainment and spectacle. I have been very disappointed since our return that not once has traffic been suddenly cleared off for a parade. And not enough things in the real world light up, spin or sing. I’m just saying.
Skywalker told us yesterday that his incredibly awesome and expensive summer camp was “boring,” and we finally pulled it out of him that he meant “boring compared to Disneyworld.” Sigh. Things will never be the same, will they? Now my kids know what magical really is and that most of life is not exactly magical.
That said, I am happy to be able to sleep once again in a separate room from my children and to be back with my trusty laptop. I’m a little behind on writing this spring, which is a lot like being away from the gym for an extended period. Once you get behind by a few weeks, it feels like starting over completely when you try to get back to work. (I also started over at Jazzercise yesterday and totally fell on my ass during class — more on that later).
Even though it’s time to get back to work and discontinue eating dessert for three meals a day, I’m going to try to channel my inner Minnie Mouse just a tiny bit this summer. Maybe I’ll be less cynical and sarcastic. Maybe I’ll be the kind of wife to Hubs that I imagine Minnie is to her main mouse. Or I’ll just try to wear more polka dots.
Please look for blogs to be a little sporadic this summer as I navigate the world of summer camps and vacations, and fall into sugar-induced comas more often than usual. And if you see Minnie’s dress in my size, let me know!
I’m M.J. (Manda) Pullen, an author and mom in the Atlanta, Georgia area. I blog about writing, publishing, motherhood, health, psychology and whatever else strikes me in the moment. Every time I successfully publish a blog, an angel gets his wings. Wait, that might be something else.
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My current roster of books includes The Marriage Pact series, a trilogy of Contemporary Romance/Women’s Fiction novels. You can find them for all eBook formats and in paperback here.
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