It was this time two years ago, the spring of 2007, when my family had this "wonderful" idea of going to Walt Disney World for Spring Break. It was one of those vacations I will always remember. You know why? BECAUSE IT WAS THE VACATION FROM HELL!!!
You have to understand that I love Walt Disney World. I have been there many times and I am one of these people who adore the mouse world so much that each year I buy a travel book even if I am not going. I have a friend who may be even more of a WDW fan than I am. She sends me a travelogue from her times there each year complete with photos. I once received twenty-five pages of notes about her vacation complete with tips on how to find hidden mickeys within the parks. And so when I called this friend to tell her we were going to Walt Disney World during Easter Break there was a brief pause of silence before she screamed into the phone, "Are you crazy?"
In case you don't know, Easter week is the busiest time of year at Walt Disney World except for maybe some weeks during summer or during Christmas week. It is not for the faint of heart. My family all chimed in with, "How bad could it be?" We just couldn't comprehend how crowded it would be.
And let's add some other interesting factors to this vacation. My eldest son was coming down with a cold and my youngest son has autism and was entering into an extremely turbulent adolescent phase. Now what am I forgetting?
Oh yeah...I had Multiple Sclerosis but didn't know it yet.
I was in that limbo stage that a lot of you are in right now. I was having symptoms but I was still hoping that I was just imagining everything. I remember sitting in the car for the long ride and my right leg began to go to sleep and it kinda stayed asleep for a long time. Most of my thoughts for those hours were worries that I might have MS.
We had stayed in a cabin at the theme park in past years and this worked out well because it was quiet, secluded, and we could make some of our own meals without depending on eating out all of the time. But this time we stayed in one of the on-site hotel rooms. While the room was nice enough, it was small and we could hear everything from toilets flushing to kids running and screaming outside until the wee hours of the morning. Needless to say, I never got a good night's sleep.
Rule number one of Vacationing when you have MS:
Your MS already makes you feel fatigued. Make sure you have a place to sleep that is quiet and restful!
One of the things that was very apparent about the particular hotel we booked for our stay was the very long distance it was from transportation. While we loved the big lagoon and meandering walking paths, it was a really long distance from our room to any of the Disney buses which would take us to the parks. I remember some very weary walks home in the evening when I just wanted to crumple to the ground and camp out right there. But I just had to keep walking in order to make it home to bed.