This blog was inspired by a recent trip to Disneyland. First I think I should share my folly with you. I'm always convinced that doing nice things for my children will reveal previously unseen angels that I am certain lurk just beneath the surface, if only I could get to them. I've never actually found these angels, but I'm always optimistic.
The excitement and the joy I witnessed on my children's faces as we entered the park made me think that my optimism was at last going to be justified. It was while waiting for the ride "The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh" that my hopes were dashed. We had only been in the park for about half an hour but I was already hearing things like, "Mom, Erika is touching me!" and "When will it be our turn?"
Not long after that, I realized that the 3 year old had had an accident in her pants. Naturally, Mom is the one who handles such events, so off we ran to the bathroom for some fresh clothes. Because of this incident, I took the threat very seriously when she announced that she had to go potty right as we were about to board "It's a Small World" after waiting in line for an hour.
Things got really interesting after the stomach flu hit. Rick started to feel sick a little bit into the second day. He said that he would go back to the hotel and I could stay at the park with the kids. But the park was very crowded and I felt that 4 kids would be more than I was comfortable keeping track of by myself. The kids were disappointed to be leaving the park so early in the day, so Rick promised them that they could go swimming if we went back to the hotel. Because rick was laying down, it fell to me to take the kids swimming. I didn't really want to and felt a little resentment that he had promised them, knowing that he wouldn't be able to take them. After swimming, Austin started to feel sick, too. When he fell asleep, the girls got bored and wanted to go back to the park. By this time I was feeling pretty sick too, but I also felt bad that the girls were stuck in the hotel. So I bravely, and foolishly, loaded Alex and the girls into the stroller and walked back to Disneyland. When we got there, we found a very short line to see Mickey and I felt that coming back was going to be worth the trouble. But my stomach was getting sicker with each passing minute. It was the carousel ride that was my undoing. After the ride ended, I helped the girls off of their horses and raced with Alex off the ride to be very sick in a flower bed. When I was able to look up, I had Alex (of course, I was holding him) and Nicole but Erika wasn't with us. I looked back at the carousel and saw her all by herself, but before I could go get her, I was throwing up again. I tried to yell for her but couldn't stop being sick. I was finally able to go get her, thankfully, and I felt a little better. Since I didn't trust myself on any more rides, we went and got in line to see the princesses. We waited in line for about an hour and a half and were just getting close to the front of the line when Erika said, "My tummy hurts!" Having horrible visions of her throwing up all over Cinderella, I rushed us all out of line. Many bitter tears were shed by Nicole who didn't care if I was sick or Erika was sick. She wanted to see the princesses. She wanted to ride more rides. We wandered around the park, danced to the parade music, and rode one more ride before returning to our hotel at bedtime.
The next morning, we arrived at Disneyland early and waited in line for the princesses an hour before the attraction opened. Austin whined the whole time, in spite of the fact that we had waited for his Jedi Academy for at least as long the day before. We had a nice enough day if you ignored the protests of "It's too hot!" or "Why do we have to wait so long?!" In the early afternoon, Nicole and I were waiting in line for "Splash Mountain" and even with our fast passes it had been nearly 40 minutes. We were second from the front when Nicole looked at me and said, "My tummy hurts!" So off we went from another line. Right after leaving the line, Rick called to say that he and the other kids were on their way back to the hotel. So Nicole and I headed back, too. She insisted that she was too sick to walk and I would have to carry her. It wasn't a long walk, but a five year old gets heavy really fast. And all the walk home all I could think about was her complete lack of concern for me when I was throwing up in the flowers.
Our last day at Disneyland was delightful (again you have to ignore the whines to get to the good part).
We had a pleasant drive home, except for Erika's frequent bouts of car sickness. Of course, my manly husband, who is fully capable of gutting a fish and disemboweling a deer, is completely incapable of cleaning up throw up. So again the task fell to me to strip down and clean up the little girl and then wipe up the car seat while Rick hid in the bushes.
This post may make it seem like I didn't enjoy or appreciate the trip. I did enjoy it and was so thankful to have been able to go. That's why I started a second blog. One to share the joys of motherhood and one to share the pains.