At Disney World that is. Yesterday was intense. It took more than eight hours to get from one hotel room to the next. It was about four and a half hours of freeway driving. I’m not counting the driving time where I got lost in forking Orlando. That took a while. Grocery shopping was sorta epic.
As we drove out to the resort I started shaking and my stomach hurt and I felt like I was about to puke. I kept up a steady chatter to myself, “Krissy it’ll be ok. This will go fine. This is Disney. You are late for check in… they will have people waiting around who are happy to help you. It’ll be fine.”
It was rather ridiculous but hey, do what you gotta do.
We got to the driveway and I started asking just about anybody in a uniform, “I’m new here, which step do I do first?”
They all smiled at me and directed me to where I needed to be.
They are all thrilled to get a Californian. These are the Disney Vacation Club properties, so they see owners and that is a fairly set group of time share people. Variety isn’t as common as you’d think for a hotel.
I had a lot of questions and I said flat out, “I’m going to feel anxious until I have a few concerns addressed.”
You know what? Like magic extra employees kind of backed over to where I was talking to the nice desk clerk. They all smiled like they were super excited that they might get to help.
I fucking love this place.
You know what? They addressed every concern right down the list. I do have to unhitch my trailer, but that’s ok. It means we will be more likely to sneak off to Universal Studios to see the Harry Potter exhibit and that’s exciting.
Oh, parking is right next to our room. This is so fabulously convenient I have no words. I thought it would be a hike. I feel so spoiled. After three months of continuous travel I now think that one of the biggest luxuries in hotels in nearby parking.
I had a very nice person help carry my stuff in from the van with a dolly so I didn’t have to make eleventy billion trips. He thought it was hilarious that I wouldn’t let him carry the heavy stuff up the stairs. It was his first day back at work after a back injury. You aren’t carrying my heavy fridge up the stairs! Heck no!
He thought that was funny. He asked a lot of questions about me and what I do. He was thrilled to meet a writer. He said he had never met one before. Over and over he said, “Whoa. You are one hard working woman. I’ve never seen a woman rush to carry heavy stuff up the stairs for me before. And you home school your kids. And you travel around the country. And you write books. Whoo. You wear me out.” He must have said it twenty times. I laughed.
He asked for information about my books. I gave him all that he needed to find me. Who knows if he will follow up.
It’s a bit awkward to tell people, “I wrote about my experiences growing up in an incestuous family. It’s intense.”
Trigger warnings, baby.
This was all after a hilarious incident with a conservative postal employee in Georgia. I’ve never seen a federal employee retract their implication that there is anything wrong with being queer so damn fast in my life. With a smile.
It’s funny what conclusions folks jump to when they find out you are home schooling.
Nope. I ain’t teaching the Bible. We don’t pray.
I mean, we have many Bibles in the house… but I teach it as one set of mythology among many that humans have come up with over many thousands of years.
It’s just one path out of many. They are all ok.
We were kind of a hilarious experience for my newly adopted niece in Georgia. (Long story.) she is growing up with a Baptist mother and a Catholic father. They attend church regularly. It’s a big deal.
I leaned over and said, “I’m a Godless Heathen.”
Her eyes went wide.
Yeah. That was wonderful.
I said, “You are going to hear a lot about people like me and when you hear those things you can decide for yourself if you agree or not. I’m just one person out of many. I don’t represent ‘all the weirdos’ of the whole world but I do represent a lot of them. When you hear people say nasty things about people like those know that they are talking about me. And think about that.”
She nodded slowly. I was an intense experience for a 9 year old.
I really loved settling into the room here at the resort. We have a system. I explained it to the kids. We all relaxed once the system was discussed and the kids stopped chafing at boundaries every other second.
It was palpable. I didn’t take my medication until after this experience occurred so it wasn’t just that all of a sudden I was stoned and I didn’t care any more. The kids stopped fighting.
It’s been a rough few days. I’m not proud but I screamed and screamed and screamed in the car. They would not stop beating on each other. I mean… they stopped when I went a little nutty. But they would not stop until I went berserk screaming about how they had to Stop Stop STOP.
I felt kind of bad about it until we talked about it later in the evening. I said I was sorry that sometimes I was an asshole when more gentle methods failed but sometimes I really need to be effective. You can’t hit each other.
Eldest Child nodded and said, “Oh I know. We really couldn’t even hear you until you broke our concentration.”
Youngest Child nodded and said, “Yeah… uhh… it’s hard to hear you sometimes when we get into it.”
Then my eldest child looked down, and brushed her head bashfully like we were in a damn movie and apologized.
It was… kind of weird.
YC didn’t apologize exactly but there were amends made. At five it isn’t always a verbal apology yet and that’s ok.
I asked if we could make an agreement to ask for rest any time and every time we feel tired so we don’t whine or get cranky with each other and everyone agreed. They know where their free feeding snack food is. They don’t have to ask me every other minute if they can have _______. It’s glorious freedom.
I think it is hilarious that they both, separately, echoed something that Noah said to me a long time ago in almost exactly the same tone of voice.
“One of the things I like about you is that you make every place feel like home” with a happy sigh to follow. This is in reference to how I set up and organize hotel rooms to within an inch of their lives if I am going to be in them long. I have to or I can’t find shit and that makes me crazy. I have to know where all my stuff is. We have a lot of stuff. That’s a lot of things to put my hands on over and over and over so I can know exactly where it is when I need it.
This is how I comfort myself. This is how I create the order I need. This is how I create the structure and the scaffolding to teach the lessons I want to teach. We are not working on the in-the-room-manners here. That lesson happens elsewhere. Here, we rest. It’s so relaxing and nice.
Only we rest and relax with a pool and a playground a 3 minute walk away so we get lots of exercise right before bed so we go to sleep easily.
This is why I pay for this. Because having people leap to help me with a smile has a cost and I am happy to pay it. I’m told that privilege can’t be bought, but advantages can. If I’m going to be a fucking rich person I’m going to occasionally pay for some fucking advantages.
Oh this is wonderful. And I have to not swear so I’ll get it out now.
Ahhh. Maybe not. I’m feeling pretty mellow. That was a happy fuck.
Cause I’m like that.
Thank you Noah.
I have quite the set up for our little mini kitchen. We don’t get a stove or a full size fridge so I brought our fridge up. The freshest food goes in the apartment fridge so the kids eat it first. The stuff they are allowed to grab at will is in an open container at a tempting eye-height. Other snacks are organized by priority in drawers cause I’m a neurotic fuck.
Tier two foods are things that we will access a lot on the trip for breakfast but they shouldn’t be freely snacked on during the rest of the day or we won’t have breakfast for the rest of the trip. We’re here almost three weeks. Be strategic.
Tier three foods are meal foods that probably require adult help because the microwave is hecka high.
Seems reasonable, right?
It is funny watching them stop asking for things every few minutes. It is kind of weird every time I see this tremendous example they just want to find out what the boundary is.
I can work with that.
Apparently, there is a certain level of beating on one another in the car that brings very unpleasant screaming.
Dude, I was going 60 miles an hour on the freeway, how am I supposed to react? I’m in an unfamiliar area during a frigging interchange. STOP FIGHTING RIGHT NOW.
I get kind of upset sometimes. I’m told I can be intimidatingly loud.
Well if you’d stop when I asked in a more moderate tone dozens of times.
I genuinely don’t know what else to do. I mean, sometimes I use the radio to startle them. But a good loud blast of sound is the only thing I can figure out to do when they go at it in the car.
I do not use the screaming method outside of the car. I separate them. In the car… THEY HAVE A TUMBLING MAT BETWEEN THEM AND THEY STILL REACH AROUND IT TO BEAT ON EACH OTHER.
Oh my. Yeah. Sibling stuff is complicated.
Mostly they get along really well. Sometimes… yeah. We have a long way to go on impulse control. But I don’t have a lot of room to complain. I was way the heck more violent than them.
This trip has had highs and lows, like all trips. I think being at the resort is going to be a high point. We are really excited to explore. We are ready to not be in the car.
The first thing we are doing is going over to child care to talk about options and schedules so the kids can pick times they want to be there.
I’m not sure what I’ll do. But I’ll go do something.
I feel a little weirdly guilty and ashamed. This is such a stupid thing to want to do. What a waste of money and time.
But it will be… so fun.
I love you Disney. Thank you for smiling at me.