Snow White and the Disney vacationWritten by Shannon Szyperski | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Five days before our plane was to leave for Walt Disney World, my almost four-year-old slipped on the bathroom floor and fractured her elbow. Only 11 ½ months after my son broke his arm attempting to jump off of a chair, there we were again, this time with vacation knocking at the door.
Elaine’s pink cast became the least of our concerns as we visited with Mickey and his crew, however. The unwieldy hair I had reluctantly let my little girl grow out for the past three months, for the very specific purpose of collecting her fourth birthday present in the form of a trip to the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique salon, went untouched during our visit to the Magic Kingdom. She instead decided to exercise her woman’s prerogative to change her mind, and we ended up scrapping our long-standing appointment.
Actually, Elaine chose the path of greatest resistance toward many a potential Disney delight. Most of her daily vacation concern was based more about wanting to get back home rather than wanting to have a good time, which is disheartening to parents who are spending a small fortune trying to make their children’s dreams come true. Had I known her favorite things would be rainbow popsicles and Mickey Mouse confetti on the ground, I could have made her just as happy with a quick trip to Meijer and $5.
Surely our fun-loving 6-year-old would at least revel in every child’s fantasy play land! That is, until fatigue, hunger, heat and/or all-out orneriness got the best of him, which seemed to happen all too often. You didn’t realize we’d have to stand in line for anything, Jack? Really? Because you stand in line for lunch at school and there are quite a few more people from all over the world looking to ride Soarin’ than there are first graders looking to purchase pizza and green beans. If I can lug around your 15-pound sister and a 10-pound backpack all day, I think you can stand up for 30 minutes at a time.
In addition to temperament, luck also chose to take an opposing side this time around. In a coincidence perhaps as rare, if not rarer, than two children breaking bones in one year in one house, my daughter started with the stomach flu on travel home day, just as she did the last time we went to Disney World in January 2007. This time instead of vomit all over the airport, it was vomit all over the bus stop, but it was vomit nonetheless. It was quite an ending to quite a vacation.
Despite a broken elbow five days before departure, our Disney vacation went off as scheduled. If my child has to be in a cast, she might as well be at Disney World! What little girl wouldn’t want her cast signed by Cinderella, Prince Charming, Woody and Jessie? Even though she was homesick at times, Elaine had many a magical experience. She even found enormous excitement in pleasures as simple as rainbow popsicles and Mickey Mouse confetti. Being at Disney can make even the smallest event seem spectacular.
I even had the opportunity to shed some of that baby weight at Disney World. Thankfully, Lucy, my 6-month-old, was so good and sat strapped to me all day content as could be, that I barely minded the extra load.
Even the heat and the physical demands of traversing the parks couldn’t keep my son, Jack, from discovering the thrill of thrill rides. He also had many the magical moment himself. In fact, his first loose tooth, which he had been looking to lose for weeks and weeks, popped out minutes before the bus arrived to take us back to the airport.
It was quite an ending to quite a vacation!
Shannon and her husband Michael are raising three children in Sylvania. E-mail her at email@example.com.