Disney Princess Half 2013 – Part 1: Just Getting There!

Sorry for being offline for a few weeks, things have been craaazzzyyy around here!  So, without further ado, here is the next chapter.  Oh, one further ado:  if you’re super easily offended, there may be too much TMI here, but that will probably happen repeatedly on this blog, so this might be the time to bail…

After I found out that I somehow, someway managed to get into the coveted, super-exclusive RunDisney meetup (can you tell I’m still excited three weeks later?), I had to do some quick changes to my hotel reservation since we weren’t planning on driving down until Friday around 9am and the meetup started at 7am.  I didn’t think my family would be all that impressed with getting up at 4am to start our drive, so we decided to drive down Thursday night instead.

I spent 45 less than magical minutes on hold waiting to talk to a Disney representative to add Thursday night to our reservation for a cabin at Ft. Wilderness campground.  I had to go to a meeting (yes this was all happening at work!), so I hung up.  When I called back a few hours later, I assumed I’d be on hold for a while.  So I dialed on my way to the restroom.  Let me say here that I can’t stand it when people use their cell phones in the restroom.  I’ve been known to flush an extra time just because I think it’s rude to have a casual conversation next to me while I’m on the toilet.  I never use my cell phone in the restroom, but I really thought that this was a way to get the first couple of minutes being on hold out of the way.  Um yeah, that didn’t happen.  Just as I finished, but BEFORE I flushed, a chipper pleasant cast member answered.  Ack!  What to do?  Should I flush and then he’ll know what I’m doing?  Unthinkable.  So, I scampered out hoping that the call would be quick and I’d be able to make it back to flush before anyone else came in.  Lesson learned, next time use a little common sense and PATIENCE and wait to place the call.  Seriously.

Happily, the Disney rep was easily able to add a night to our cabin and the call was wrapped up quickly.  I scampered back to the restroom and was relieved to find that I hadn’t grossed any of my coworkers out.  Did a quick flush and casually strolled back to my office.

So, a few hours after I sent my confirmation response to the “congratulations” e-mail from RunDisney, I started worrying.  Did they get my response?  Am I really on the list.  I mean, I never win anything, how could I actually be on the list?  All my worries about the race disappeared, eclipsed by a whole new set of worries about the meetup.

Here they are in no particular order:
1.  I’ll get there and they won’t have me on the list.
2.  The t-shirt will be too small and won’t fit (I ordered a large, but started getting body image insecurity, maybe I should have gotten an XL).
3.  I’ll get injured/sick/hit a wall during the run and embarrass myself.
4.  I’ll be all alone, surrounded by perky, extrovert, skinny bloggers and social media experts.
5.  I’ll get lost driving from the cabin to Epcot.
6.  OK, I know there were more, but three weeks later some have evaporated.

In any case, the swirling worries and packing anxieties kept me up the entire night Monday night.   I literally slept 1 1/2 hours the whole night.  It was not fun.  But, it kicked me in the butt a little and made me face my anxieties.  I posted a few places (Facebook and the DISboards) and got some reassuring feedback that I would not be alone.  Then I made detailed packing lists.  I’ll try to post them in a later blog and link them here if I can figure it out.  One for the race, one for the meetup, and one for the family vacation (with a 2 year old, this one was substantial).  I also decided to take the whole day off on Thursday to finish packing.

Thursday, I had an acupuncture appointment and a hair cut and color appointment.  I’ve been going to acupuncture for about 4 years.  I started while dealing with infertility and stress issues and kept going because it seems to balance me and helps keep me from getting colds as often as I used to.  I also had a lunch date with a coworker in between the appointments.  For the race, I wanted to dress as Ariel (well, first it was Merida, then Mulan, then Ariel).  So I decided to dye my hair bright, cartoon red for the race.  In retrospect, not an awesome idea, but I was excited about it.  And, since we were staying in the cabins, I decided to go to Publix and do the trip grocery shopping here before the trip.  After all of that, I was doing crazy packing and stuffing everything in the car.  I have no idea how people go to Disney, especially with babies/toddlers and a race to pack for, without a car.  I could not have gotten everything in two suitcases!

We picked up my 13 year old son at his bus stop and drove down to Disney.  We had a quick dinner at Cracker Barrel where we somehow managed to be the only patrons with a small child.  And a two year old at that.  He’s in an awesome stage where he announces “All Done” as soon as he’s full and demands to get out of his high chair.  Loudly.  And repeatedly.  Every time he made a peep, these other people would whip around and glare at us.  It’s Cracker Barrel at 5pm for pete’s sake!  Not Victoria & Albert’s!  This experience did not help my stress level at all!

The toddler also is a great traveler in the car, that is, until the sun goes down.  He hates being in the car after dark.  I swear I haven’t let him watch zombie or vampire movies, but as soon as the sun hits the horizon, he starts crying if he’s in the car.  We think it’s from last summer when we drove down to Orlando during one of the nasty tropical storms that wasn’t supposed to be as bad as it was.  It was a stressful drive with driving rain the entire way and the clouds were so heavy it was dark even in the middle of the day.  Anyways, as soon as it got dark, we had to sing songs to him the rest of the 1 1/2 hours.  Itsy Bitsy Spider, Baa Baa Black Sheep, Old McDonald, argh.  But, we made it without tears.

The check in went smoothly, we unpacked and finally got to sleep around 10pm.  Traveling to Disney with little kids, I can’t recommend staying at the cabins at Ft. Wilderness enough.  They are basically one bedrooms one bath single-wide trailers with a cabin theme.  You can park two cars right next to the door.  The bedrooms have one full size bed and two bunk beds.  The living room has a murphy bed in the wall that pulls down to another full sized bed.  So, it can sleep six pretty comfortably.  And it has a full kitchen and mousekeeping does your dishes every day for you!  The best part is that you have a little space between the cabins, so a crying baby or toddler running up and down the hallway for thirty minutes won’t disturb your neighbors.  It is a really relaxing environment.

Part 2 – RunDisney Meetup
Part 3 – RunZilla (and the Expo)
Part 4 – The Race!

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