Yes, you read it correctly. Yes, I actually said that Disney has ruined me! You’re probably wondering if I am delusional, haven’t slept, or maybe just lost my mind. But no, I’m completely coherent. Disney did ruin me, and I’ll tell you how.
Thanks to Disney, I will probably never get to see half of the places in the world that I’ve wanted to visit. I have always wanted to see the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone Park, Las Vegas, Italy, and the list goes on and on. I had sort of a bucket list of places, if you will, that I said I’d love to go and explore. Will I go? No. Why? Because since I’ve been traveling to Disney, and taking my children there, there is no place else I can justify visiting!
Here’s my thought on that one. Like a lot of families, we can’t just drop everything and go on vacation. I wish that were the case, but we can’t. In order to venture out and travel, this requires time to save money and plan. Money being the most important part. So, the reason I can’t visit other locations is because there’s a little voice inside my head that says NOT to do that. That voice that says “wouldn’t you rather use that money and save for Disney?” And that voice is right. Darn it!!! Because I know how magical and fabulous WDW is, I can’t spend my money elsewhere. As you know, it’s expensive to go to Disney, even if you wait for special offers, it’s going to cost you. I just can’t fathom putting money aside to take my family anywhere else. See, Disney ruined me! I told you so.
Being that it’s a new year, even though the weather is still freezing here, I always start looking forward to the warm months ahead. Part of that is thinking about going on a trip. I used to love going to Traverse City here in MI. It’s about 4 1/2 hours from me, has a big beautiful beach on Grand Traverse Bay, and there is a lot to do there. It’s pricey though. I thought for a moment, that maybe since it’s closer to home, we could go for a long weekend. After contemplating, and running numbers, I thought NO WAY! That chunk of change could be put towards a Disney vacation, which is way better than going “Up North” as we say here. See? Ruined!
I have tried to change my way of thinking. On the drive home from Orlando the last time, we made stops in South Carolina, West Virginia, etc. The scenery was beautiful. It just so happened to be the weekend of the “World’s largest flea market” in Virginia, and the people at the Welcome Center told us to swing by and check it out, which we did. While at the Welcome Center, we pulled out brochures for Virginia Beach. The discussion then turned to, well, maybe on our next vacation, instead of Disney, we’ll go to the beach. Heck, it’s closer to home and probably a bit cheaper. Great intentions, right? Surprise, surprise….. we never went to Virginia Beach. I don’t even have to tell you the reason why, you already know!
So now you get a little more background on why I say Disney has ruined me for life. Walt Disney’s visions of his Magical Parks were without a doubt amazing. He knew what he was doing, and did it well. Years and years later, so many families are loyal to Walt’s creations, and try to get to the Parks as often as they can. Maybe I should blame my parents? They are the ones who first took me to WDW at the age of 6! See what they started? A lifetime of Disney memories had begun after that. I can’t count how many times I have gone to Disney since then, but I know it’s where I always want to go. It got even better once I had children of my own, and got to see Disney through their eyes. I remember clearly, when my son Andrew was 2, us standing near the train station at the Magic Kingdom. I was holding him up when “Wishes” began. The look of wonder on his face was priceless, and I began to cry. I’m getting choked up just thinking of that moment. That, my friends, is pure magic. It’s what makes my heart swell. Happiness like that makes me want to go back for more.
So, if Disney ruined me from being able to travel to other destinations, then so be it. For now, that’s where I love to go. Maybe someday when I’m older, I will be able to justify taking weekend trips to other places, and squeeze Disney in there too. Maybe I will be able to afford to travel to multiple places. For now, there is only one place that comes to mind when I think of getting away, and that’s Disney. I’m sure I’m not the only one. I bet some of you are “ruined” too.
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