The alarm went off way too early this morning; not that anyone should feel sorry for me. Today is the day I'm returning home to Disney World and as the internet meme says, "I'm only a morning person on the day I go to Disney."
I gleefully showered, packed a few last minute items, and headed for the airport. It isn't a long drive and at this early hour, it was a peaceful one as well. My wife and I talked about my plans at the parks and I told her that I wished she was able to come but at eight months pregnant, she wasn't about to try. Instead, like the loving, supportive wife she is, she kissed me goodbye and told me to have fun.
When I walked into the terminal, a wave of emotions came over me. I was sad to be leaving my family but excited to be headed back to Orlando. Then, as I approached the ticket counter to drop off my bag, I was struck by another emotion; Joy. Pure, unadulterated joy.
There must have been a dozen of them. They were all lined up single file against the counter and one of the ticketing agents was hurriedly trying to process them all. I could tell that even at this early hour, they were beyond excited. Most of them probably hadn't slept a wink the previous night because these children and their parents were also on their way to Disney World.
As I looked on at these little children, I could feel their excitement as they talked about what they were going to do first and who they wanted to see. One little girl said she just couldn't wait to meet Mickey while a slightly older one said she wanted to meet Princess Anna from Frozen. Another excitedly told her mother that she just couldn't wait to go in the Haunted Mansion to see how scary it was.
As often as I've been to Disney World, it is moments like this that help make these trips so special. These children are so innocent and their emotions were so raw that I couldn't help but smile and share in their joy. It was their joy and excitement that put me in the mood for my trip and got me through the long day. It is also a reminder for me that no matter how hard life gets or what obstacles I may encounter, joy can be found, in family, and at Disney.
Thanks for reading.