This post is for true blue Disney fans. If you don’t like Disney vacations or If you don’t understand the thrill and allure of Disney parks and resorts, feel free to click away now. You won’t understand this post and it will most certainly not be of interest or assistance to you in any way. Come back another time and perhaps you’ll see something more suitable for your reading pleasure.
Still here? Excellent! Let’s talk Disney Vacation Emotions!
As you read this, I’ll be on my way to Walt Disney World as I’ve done many times since my first visit in 1990. I love a Disney vacation! It’s not all fun and games and great food and experiences though. I’m emotionally involved from the time I leave home until the time I return. After all this time, I’ve come to realize that my emotional ebbs and flows are pretty consistent on each Walt Disney World visit and they follow a general pattern that looks like this…
Day One: Worry and excitement in equal measures. I worry that I didn’t pack all the right necessities while at the same time I’m overflowing with child-like excitement about all the wonderful and beloved sights, sounds, smells, and details I’m about to experience. The Magical Express trip from the airport is too slow, but builds anticipation at the same time. When I walk down Main Street USA and see Cinderella Castle, I’m going to get choked up. Don’t talk to me.
Days Two Through the Second-to-Last-Day. BOOM BABY! I’m in the zone. I’m feeling ecstatic and proud! I’m a seasoned Disney veteran (as are the other members of my family) and we know what we’re about. FastPasses, dining reservations, thrills, new experiences and family favorites…singing Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah, waiting for our stretch limo, boarding a service elevator, meeting Belle, cruising in a Doom Buggy or Clam Mobile, asking Crush a question…it’s all so wonderful and evokes such joy!
The Day Before the Last Day (aka: Second-to-Last-Day): Panic sets in. Oh, NO! It’s almost over! Stay in the moment…pay attention. Squeeze all the joy out of these last two days. What were we thinking? We should have planned to stay longer! Where has the time gone? I don’t want to leave. I can sense the real world creeping back in, but manage to push it away.
The Last Day: I know I have to go home, but one more day means making the most of every opportunity. I’m not going to waste a minute! My grandmother used to say, “Quit while you still want more” and those are excellent words to remember on this day. I’ll admit it…I’m tired. My feet hurt. I miss Junior (the Wonder Dog) and know he misses me. By lunch, I’m resigned to packing up and saying so long, but will squeeze in all the fun I can until the last possible minute.
Going Home: I’m exhausted and sad. I looked forward to this for so long and now it’s over. How could so many months of anticipation end up like this…as if time sped up and POOF! It’s in the past. Oh, but the memories! Those will sustain me until…hmmmm…I’m feeling another Disney vacation coming on! Let’s pick some dates and start planning!
Any of this sound familiar? What are your Disney vacation emotions?