A few words on #DisneySMMoms

I’ve been to Disney so many times, I park in SubDiva 53.

I’ve been to Disney so many times, A Small World is sick of my theme song.

I’ve been to Disney so many times, my Fast Passes used to read, “You again?”

I’ve been to Disney so many times NASA has mistaken me for a moon orbiting the Epcot ball.

And in two weeks, I’m going again.

For 11 years we lived an hour’s drive from the park in Florida. Our kids were little, then big, but it was a place that grew with our family. Anyone who came to visit us wanted to go there. If a friend or relative went to Disney World on vacation, we’d meet them there for the day.

And then there were the media visits. I was so very fortunate to be able to write for the Tampa Times and attend many events and blog about them. I was so lucky to be a part of the very first Social Media Moms Conference in which there were just 16 of us who represented a small slice of the blogosphere—both Mommy and non-mommy—I still watch those women in awe at where their careers and lives have gone from there.

And the extremely complex, deep psychological reason why we keep going back? Because it’s fun.

This year I was just as thrilled to get an invitation the Disney SM Moms Conference next month. It will be held in at DisneyLand in California—a place I once visited over 30 years ago on a family vacation. I can provide no frame of reference, no helpful tips, no sarcastic lead-ins because it will be completely new to me.

And that’s okay.

In fact, it’s pretty awesome.

As parents, we are natural planners. Particularly when it comes to travel, we need things mapped out exactly so that we can pack and make appropriate arrangements for all the little and big people we are responsible for. We want to know what to bring, when we eat, what to wear, what we’re doing and who is going to be there. There are reservations to make, suitcases to be filled, magic to create. I get it.

But if anyone is searching for counsel on how to approach this trip, my advice is simple: with utter abandon. Suspend your natural tendencies to plan every aspect, and allow the many talented people who put this entire amazing, one-of-a-kind experience to handle the details. They are gifted in the art of surprises, and it’s a time like no other. If you’re bringing your kids, show them the beauty of spontaneity. Be bewildered together. I guarantee you will learn more, laugh more, and engage more with amazing women doing amazing things.

No matter if it’s your first time or your address is on the parade route, engage in the joy. The only thing you really need to bring is an open mind.

©2014 Tracey Henry

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