I am lucky though. It's been over two years since my last flare up. As awful as they are, a little distance between flares can help me maintain normalcy. So when considering this post, I thought back to my last flare up. Where was I? Walt Disney World of course.
My husband (then fiance) Tom and sister-in-law planned a last minute trip down to the World to participate in D23's Magic and Merriment special event. The itinerary was simply too good to pass up. Special events included a seminar at EPCOT, special seating for the Candlelight Processional, dinner on the set of Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show, a private showing of the Osborne Family Festival of Lights, tickets to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party and (arguably my favorite part) a tour of the infamous Cinderella Castle Suite.
A few nights before our trip I felt the dreaded gut pain that is the bane of my existence. We discussed canceling, but since it wasn't a full blown flare yet and because I was looking forward to it so much, I tearfully decided to get on the plane and hope for the best.
We had a great time, but I spent the majority of the trip running from bathroom to bathroom. Since I couldn't really wait in line, I didn't go on many attractions but I was OK with that. I did them all before! I went more for the scenery and Christmas festivities.
However, when it was time to sign up for the Cinderella Castle Suite tour, I was feeling particularly miserable. We were sitting by Sleepy Hollow for about a half hour and spent the whole time running through Liberty Square to the bathrooms. (not the easiest location by the way) I finally thought I had everything under control when our group got called for the tour.
Our tour guide was amazing and walked us up to the Castle. They were giving a history of the suite when my stomach started acting up again. I knew I wouldn't make it through the tour, so I told Tom to stay with his sister and enjoy the tour. He, as always, objected to continuing; however, I insisted. There was no need for everyone to miss out because of my condition.
After my sprint to the Fantasyland restrooms, I walked back to the Castle and sat down across from the door where my group entered. All of the emotions of the weekend caught up with me. Just as the tears began flowing down my cheeks, a Cast Member peeked her head out of the door.
"You were in the last group, weren't you?" she said, peeking through the many guests strolling through the castle passageway. I turned around to look behind me even though I was sitting against the wall. "Yes, I had to run to the bathroom," I responded. "I'm just waiting for the rest of my group."
"Are you still interested in seeing the suite?" she asked, now standing over me. Am I still interested? Absolutely. "Come on," she said with that famous Disney smile. "I will give you a personal tour."
The Cast Member proceeded to give me an amazing tour of the suite. On the elevator ride up, I asked her if my group sent her for me. "No," she said. "I saw you run off and you looked very upset. I figured it was an emergency and I'd find you. So I asked someone to watch the group while I came back down here to get you."
If the tears weren't flowing before, they certainly were after she told me that.
People talk about the "Disney magic" with an amused tone. Yet that night I felt it stronger than ever thanks to one observant, kind and thoughtful Cast Member. One of the biggest regrets I have is not getting her name. However, I still stopped in Guest Relations to tell them about my experience. They told me that they will most likely be able to pinpoint who it was based on the time and the tour number I provided them with.
The Disney magic is very real, and very powerful. Enjoy the photos below from my tour:
|The mosaics on the elevator floor|
|The clock always reads 11:59 in Cinderella Castle|
|The details are stunning!|
|The gorgeous beds!|
|My favorite part of the suite - the royal bathroom!|