His first visit was at two years old. Some thought he was a bit too young to fully understand going to Disney and said he’d forget two days after we’d return, but that didn’t stop me from wanting to take him! I still remember sitting in a restaurant on Mother’s Day and the waitress came up to check on us… Colten, out of nowhere, tells her (and all those in close proximity to us) that he was “going on a plane to go see Mickey Mouse!” In days following he’d tell everyone he encountered... And who said he didn’t understand it?!
Well we made it to Disney. We met some characters here and there, around Epcot, on Main Street. We even had a breakfast at Chef Mickey’s. I thought for sure he’d be ecstatic meeting Mickey there in the restaurant, right at our own table. To be honest though, he didn’t want anything to do with him. Don’t get me wrong, he had fun. He really enjoyed seeing Pluto, but the long awaited meeting with Mickey wasn’t what I had hoped it was going to be.
Later that very evening the kids and I had a last minute reservation at Tony’s Town Square Restaurant. Having shown up for our reservation a bit early, but not early enough to really venture off we decided to wait the 20 minutes to visit Mickey & Minnie again.
When we finally made it to Mickey’s room, we were the last in with a few families ahead of us. We could see Mickey as soon as we walked in and Bubby’s smile seemed to get a bit bigger. Mickey & Minnie were taking their time with each family, which was just fine with me. As we waited Colten began to get more excited. Aside from Donald and Pluto, he kind of liked the characters more from a distance, and after the meeting with Mickey that morning was a bit of a letdown, I wasn’t expecting much. We rounded the banister and had one family visiting with M&M and one in front of us. I tried keeping the kids occupied a bit longer by taking photos with the “Magician Mickey prop” while we waited.
All of a sudden Colten just couldn’t wait to see Mickey any longer. He was giggling and yelling for Mickey, trying to get his attention. I was completely surprised by this. I tried and tried to get him to calm down. He wasn’t crying or anything just very excited and I didn’t want him intruding on another family’s time. It was taking all I had to keep him back. Thankfully there’s a little bit of a wall there, or he may have flown right into the other family’s photo! The family in front of us was getting a big kick out him (and me trying to contain his excitement, too, I’m sure).
As the folks were wrapping things up, the family in front of us told me to go ahead. “Oh, I wouldn’t dream of it,” I’d told them, “we could wait.” They laughed out loud at that! They thought it was adorable how ecstatic he seemed to be, and insisted that since they’re children were older they could wait a few more minutes. Their kids even encouraged us to go ahead! I was blown away by their generosity!
Just as I thought, once we were up my little guy got shy. He didn’t run to Mickey as he’d made out that he would only minutes before. Instead, he wanted to be held. Big sister went ahead. She had her moment with the famous duo as we inched closer. Tessa introduced her little brother to Mickey and he could tell he had a shy one on his hands.
He started with a little tickle and the wall came tumbling down. To hear my son giggle like that, and see this huge smile on his face… I’ll never forget it. It honestly brings a tear as I write this. He just laughed and laughed. That smile could have gone on for daayyys!!
I’m not sure what the difference was from that morning to that evening, but this was the reaction I was expecting. This was the moment I was waiting to see. After all the times he’d told everyone he’d be meeting his pal Mickey, I could only picture it in my head. Never did that picture turn out as great as these!
To this day at age 7 he still recalls things from trip specifically, not just the ones after. Maybe not every kid is like that, but even if he does eventually forget- I won't! And these trips are as much for us as the parents as they are for the children. Creating these moments and memories are worth it all!
If you have multiple children and are putting off that trip until the youngest gets a little bigger, I encourage you not to wait! Go ahead and go. Each child will get to experience something different at each age. And you'll get to witness all those precious smiles and giggles. It's just magical.
I'd love to hear about any special character meetings your children have had... or what characters is your child looking most forward to meeting? Please share in the comments below or on my Facebook page.
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