Monday, April 26, 2010
Taking a break from stress and worry
Queen Teen and I had reached our max on unhappiness, so we headed to Disneyland. I bought a Disney vacation package from AAA (great deal!). The two of us packed our bags, said goodbye to homework, therapy, doctors and housework and then flew to LA to lose ourselves in the Magic Kingdom.
What is it about Disneyland that makes people drop everything and spend far more money than they should just to wander around the park in the hope of meeting a Princess or getting on a ride in less than 30 minutes? I have never been what you'd call a Disney person; I could care less about Mickey Mouse and I'd scoff at people who collected pins. But now, I can't wait for our annual trip to D-Land. Annual trip? Yep. Queen Teen demands it. We hunt autographs and trade pins with the most hard-core Disney fans, but we skip the rides. Just wandering the lanes, looking at the shops and statues, flowers and settings, is enough for us, and when we run across a character like Minnie Mouse we're thrilled.
This was the year for Minnie. Queen Teen has developed a passion for all things Minnie, in fact, I think it's almost equal to her love for Cinderella. We spotted Minnie three times and posed with her twice, and in every shop Queen Teen hunted for the Minnie Mouse dolls. The other highlight for Queen Teen was meeting Princess Jasmine, one of the Disney princesses she hadn't met before. And of course, she met Cinderella. I reserved a table at Ariel's Grotto where the Princesses come to your table while you eat, and it was a good thing I did, because that was the only place Cinderella appeared. If we went to D-Land and missed Cinderella, Queen Teen would be crushed. And we met Princess Tianna in New Orlean's Square, who sang songs from the Frog Princess accompanied by a New Orleans Jazz style band.
Overall, it was a good trip, except for the food poisoning. Our first night at the California Grand, I ate a salad and woke up sick as a dog. The sickness lasted the entire trip, making it even harder to care for Queen Teen on my own so far from home. I sipped tea and ate crackers while pushing her wheelchair several miles a day. Even without being sick, it was difficult taking care of her alone. She's so much bigger and heavier, as well as more wobbly. Between her size and worsening ataxia I realized taking her do Disneyland, or anywhere far away, by myself has become almost impossible. Sure, I can do it, but at a cost to my energy and sanity. Next time, Rick is coming.
While we explored the park, Queen Teen sang songs at the top of her lungs, making the people we passed smile. "This little light of mine... I'm gonna let it shine..." Seeing her that happy after so many weeks of snarling misery was worth every dime, every exertion, even worth food poisoning.
On our last day, Queen Teen announced, "I'm so lucky! I get to come to Disneyland. Not everybody gets to go, but I do. And I get to go next year too!"
Yes you do, darlin.