She takes a deep breath and a wide smile encompasses her face. The golden Floridian sunshine only accentuates the happiness that is bursting within her. The tropical-like breeze blows softly through her hair as she fixes her eyes on the treasures before her. She gazes in childlike wonder and awe at the magic of the castle that she is slowly approaching. Suddenly, she’s transported back in time. Back to her childhood. Back to those carefree moments where nothing mattered except the present. She closes her eyes for a moment and allows herself to relive those days of no job, no bills, and no stress. And it feels so nice. Every dream, every hope, and every wish her little heart desires comes to the front of her mind. This place, this magical, wonderful, and happy place, makes her believe once again that those dreams can come true. She moves forward now with a spring in her step, and a song in her heart, and for the first time in a long time, she’s home…..
“All of our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”
~ Walt Disney
I’m not one to believe in magic. I respect the profession, but it’s just not my thing. Take me to see a magician and most likely, I’ll spend the entire evening analyzing how every trick is done. That’s just not enjoyable for me. BUT….take me to Disney World, and it’s an entirely different story. Soon, I’m just as naïve and innocent as I was when I was four years old. I believe that I can fly, I believe that I can sing with all the voices of the mountains, and paint with all the colors of the wind…Okay, maybe not to that extent, but I do believe in happiness again. I do believe that anything and everything is possible again.
My love for Disney goes way back, way, waaaayyy back. In fact, I’m 99.9% sure that I was born with Disney blood in my veins. (And that I’m secretly a Disney princess, and all of this reality stuff is just to teach me a lesson, but that’s another story. )
As an infant, I was surrounded by everything Disney Baby related, and it only grew from there. When I was around age four and five, (before I realized the value of a good sleep!) I would wake up extra early on Saturday mornings and watch the classic Disney films for three hours straight. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast, and The Lion King were among my all-time favorite movies and every weekend two of them would run non-stop. I would have my little bowl of cereal and milk, and be totally content. Back then, it really didn’t take much to make me happy! Gosh how I miss those simple days…
My first trip to Disney was around that same age too, and I remember it so vividly. I was an itty-bitty, teeny-tiny, little girl and the Magic Kingdom was celebrating its 25th anniversary. The castle was decorated as a whimsical, super yummy looking cake. As a four-year old, that was pure Heaven on earth!
I met the princesses; Cinderella, and Snow White, and of course I had to meet the Fairy Godmother! I stood in Ariel’s grotto for the longest time and imagined myself living under the sea with the rest of the mermaids. It was then that I decided to make a full-time career out of being a princess – also in the hopes that one day a forest filled with animals would come clean my house!
“A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you’re fast asleep
In dreams you will lose your heartache
Whatever you wish for you keep.” ~ Cinderella
Back then, I loved Disney because of the fun, the lightheartedness, the rides, the idea that little ol’ me could be a princess.
Flash forward to the present day. I still adore Disney just as much as when I was a child. The only difference is, I understand it more. I sometimes hear: “Disney is so childish. It’s time to grow up.” No, thank you. Peter Pan didn’t, so why should I?
People ask me all the time why I love Disney. Well, it’s pretty simple. Disney brings out the best in me. It represents the wonder, amazement, and pure innocence of my childhood. It holds all of my dreams, my wishes, and my hopes. It is the momentary illusion and excitement that maybe, just maybe, Mickey mouse and pixie dust, and castles, and daring adventures are all real.
It’s about love and laughter. It’s about tapping into the child that still lives within all of us. It’s about remembering to have fun, to not take life, or ourselves, so seriously all of the time. Viewing life with that same childlike wonder that we had so many years ago.
It’s about how hard work, persistence, determination, confidence, and positivity are the key components to success; remembering how one man changed the world and chose to shine amongst all those who said he never would. It’s about the man named Walt Disney who never gave up, even though he was once fired from a newspaper company for not being “creative enough.”
It’s about believing that despite all of the chaos, the sadness, and the hurt in the world, there is still room for happiness and inspiration. It’s about choosing joy, choosing to see the light in the darkest of times. It’s about living with an open, carefree, and loving heart.
It’s about dreaming, and following the deepest dreams that lie within your heart. It’s about having the courage to slay the dragons, the villains, the challenges that get thrown in your way. It’s about believing that you can do whatever you want to do, and whatever you set your mind to.
“If you can dream it, then you can do it.” ~ Walt Disney
Lastly, it’s about knowing, believing, and hoping that someday, when the clock strikes midnight, you will find your glass slipper. It might be in the form of a job, true love, children, whatever you desire. You will find that perfect fit, and so will I. And it will be so magical.
“Star light, star bright
First star I see tonight
I wish I may I wish I might
have the wish I wish tonight
We’ll make a wish, and do as dreamers do
And all our wishes
will come true.” ~ Disney Wishes