You all know that I don’t write quite as much as I used to. To be real and up front, it’s simply different than it once was and my goals have shifted a little bit towards community building. In part, that’s the reasoning behind this article. I can write food reviews, share planning strategies, and provide recommendations to hidden gem WDW destinations but none of that really matters if we can’t answer this simple question of “Why is Disney World Important to You?” To some, this question may be posed to them from friends and coworkers in another way… something along the lines of “Why are you going to Disney again?” or a personal favorite “Aren’t you too old for Disney?” That one always makes me laugh. In the realm of brutal honesty, these used to frustrate me, but I actually believe we all have an answer and more and more often I think it’s a unique one to each and every one of our own personal mindsets. Mindsets driven by experiences.
I’m actually debating having a few other friends share their story, because for so many of us this place is far more than simply a vacation destination, but at the same time it’s an incredibly difficult answer to put into words. Honestly, it’s taken me a long while to come up with what I feel like could be the “right” answer to this question. In the grand scheme of things, I really don’t believe there is one true answer to why Disney World is important not only for me and to me but for anyone. I’ll try my very best to explain my thoughts here, but I think it’s a very important thing to do before you return to the parks or set expectations for your Disney vacation experience.
So, let’s try this. Admittedly I don’t have a perfect answer of my own. Instead, it’s a culmination of feelings in an odd way. You see, to me Disney goes far further than a typical guest. In a very real way, many days it’s part of what I do, and even more so possibly a little piece of who I am, but let me take a quick step back.
To get to this point, it was quite literally an unexpected journey and not always a successful one. When I was young, our family would travel from KY in the old school Honda Odyssey mini van, we’d drive every visit, and we’d stay at what was at that point $100 rooms at Caribbean Beach (Don’t we all miss those…). I didn’t know much about what was going on, but I did know that every time we left for this magical place called Disney we’d sit in the car for hours, play games with family, explore this place where the nights always ended with fireworks, and more than anything I remember never wanting to leave. Some of those feelings simply never go away. The parks change, the people change, the resort often changes, but that same magical feel persists year after year in new and different ways.
To me, that’s the value in going to WDW or at least it was as a kid growing up immersed in the parks. I know my story isn’t that unique, but it is one that sparks memories in the minds of those that have had this incredible blessing of growing up in a “Disney family.” There is no level of value you can put on those memories. Also, take a minute to notice one other thing… None of these memories are tied to a specific place, a specific experience, or a specific attraction. Instead, they’re tied to the “magic” that the older I get the more I tend to realize was never about what Disney created. Instead, it was about those little moments with your dad on Main Street, hugging your mom during the fireworks as a kid, chasing your sister around a playground in a distant memory of what was at Hollywood Studios, or simply the joy you get to see on the faces of those around you.
Today, I look at what I get to do a little bit differently. I not only have memories with family, but as a result of this site, the community it’s helped create, and the opportunities in life it’s opened up, I have memories with friends I didn’t have four years ago. I have memories with coworkers. I even have memories with like minded individuals of which some I’ve never even met in person. I can’t even begin to tell you the value that adds to my life and the incredible blessing it is to call a little part of what I love what I get to do and a little piece of every day. All of this is a reality that is still a little difficult for me to believe. Especially having never worked for the Disney company myself.
Truthfully, I still struggle with some things in this space, there’s no doubt about that. However, now I struggle while having the support of some of the best friends life could have brought my way. Many of which have shifted on over to “real life” support systems as well. You would never fully understand the value that creates in my life without spending a day with me trying to explain it. Even my closest friends outside of the Disney space rarely understand it. As simple as it sounds though, that’s why Disney World is important to me. I know that’s a short, simple, and to the point description, but that’s reality.
I truly believe that often times the simpler moments in life and the simpler things that come into our lives can often be the things that end up meaning the most to us. It’s not only what we remember the most but often times the mentally stimulating triggers in our mind that make us oh so grateful for a place that may seem so foreign or confusing to some. There’s value in simplicity and that realization is something that we all can hope to remember next time we stroll through the parks. Take a moment, take a breath, laugh with your family, dance with your kid like you wouldn’t do anywhere else. Why? Because tomorrow isn’t guaranteed but that memory you created in the moment with that person you care so much about is guaranteed. That’s not a Disney thing, that’s a life moment that you’ll never truly forget.
Looking to Travel at the Moment?
If you want or simply need a little bit of planning help to make your Disney vacation dream a reality, check out the quote request form below this article from our friends over at Destinations to Travel. They’ll let you do as much or as little of the planning as you’d like and may even save you some money along the way! As always, thanks for supporting those who support us. As an added bonus, they will work with you when unexpected things arise during your trip or before your journey to the parks. That help can be invaluable when booking or if a flight gets canceled or other oddity pops up.
Need Something to Do on Your Thursday Night? – Come Talk Disney With Us on the LIVE After Hours Show!
Every Thursday night at 9pm ET you can find me and a few friends over on Facebook broadcasting live and talking Disney. You might even get the chance to win a prize from the parks! If you want to join us and join this awesome growing live streaming community of Disney fans, like our show page to be notified when we go live! We can’t wait to see you there! Tap the photo below to join us!