Thursday, January 19, 2012

A guide to Disneyland for the easily over stimulated

Don't go.  Not to be a downer or anything, and not that we didn't have a really truly awesome time but holy shit there is a lot going on at that place.  Every light fixture is also equipped with a speaker which is constantly playing music appropriate to your current local.  Fantasyland is pumping with Be Our Guest and Once Upon a Dream, while Adventureland boasts the Indiana Jones Theme Song.  Over at California Adventure things can get a little patriotic.  My point is that there.is.sound.everywhere.  And that is on top of all the other noise that exists just by virtue of being at a theme park with (tens of?) thousands of other people and their children.

Can you tell which of my children is easily overstimulated?  (Actually, looking at that picture, can you tell which of my children is positioning themselves to have a Paris Hilton-esque wardrobe malfunction?)  (She is wearing underwear, I am almost positive.)

Poor Hayden.  Everything was just too much.  Too loud, too bright, too in your face.  Zeni, on the other hand, couldn't get enough.  The only time she was upset was when she was too short for the roller coasters.

Back to the guide.

If your child are easily over stiumlated don't go to Disneyland.  And if you do go to Disneyland do not spend the month before your trip building up the Jedi Training Academy to said child.  It was cancelled the first time we went - you can imagine the tantrum that ensued and how that left even more anticipation when we tried again the next day.

We arrived early and got a seat right up front.  They select kids from the audience and I went totally Toddlers and Tiaras on Hayden's ass:  "OK honey, you have to jump up and down and yell and do your best star wars poses and be really cute and not too loud and don't shove anyone but do try and stand right in front....."  Not my most soothing parenting, but by golly it worked, and since beating your peers is all that matters it was totally worth it

The Jedi Master pointed his lightsaber at Hayden thereby ensuring his place as a Padawan in the 10:30 training.  mmmm.  Stoked he was.  Training ensued.  They were given robes and training sabers and chanted, all communist work-camp style, as they practiced their moves:  "left shoulder, right shoulder, duck, strike!" It was totally awesome.

Then this happened:
The Darths, Maul and Vader, arose from a hidden platform in the stage all covered in mist and deep breathing.  Just as the tell tale breathing started over the sound system the lock step of storm troopers entering to surround the stage could be heard.  And my son LOST HIS SHIYTE.  The force was not with him.  He screamed.  He ran, with crazy eyes, around in a circle looking for me.  I was doubled over with laughter and he couldn't find me so he grabbed one of the trainers robes (still screaming, mind you) and refused to move.

Proud, folks.  It was a proud moment.

There are other stories from our Disney trip.  Stories of 2 kids grinning so big the rest of their faces looked contorted.  Stories of truly magical moments, of spending time with good friends we don't get to see enough, of waking up every morning to the silhouette of the kids looking out on the magical land and planning their day.  But honestly, this story is my favorite.

Happy Disneyland everyone!




6 comments:

Kelsy said...

Oh how I seriously wish I could have been there to see Hayden's face when the Jedi stormed the stage. I can imagine it, but to see it first-hand would be truly hilarious. No wonder he couldn't find you. I'd be doubled over on the ground too. Get some rest after your "amazing" vacation!

anymommy said...

It was worth it just for that right? If only there was video footage.

Anonymous said...

OK Elise--that made me cry I laughed so hard!! The boys did that Jedi Academy when we went, so I was totally picturing it...and getting them up there was half the battle! They picked T first, and I thought B might have an actual coronary if he didn't get picked too...and veeeeery lastly the saber pointed to him. WHEW! They were old enough to handle the pressure with Darth Maul (Mall? Mal? BAD, no matter how you spell it!) but T spent much of our time in the Happiest Place On Earth overwhelmed and irritated like Hayden. My favorite quote from the trip? After I pulled Teag out of a huge line of onlookers after his 700th negative comment of the day, "You are gonna march right out there and be happy. HAPPY, I tell you. This is the Happiest Place on the Whole Freaking Planet and you will at least act like you LOVE it." Dear God. Pass the vodka.

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Me. Us. She. said...

I totally would have lost my shiyte too. I have this completely irrational fear of adults in scary costumes. Poor boy!!