To many who are not in the ‘Disney Fandom’ I am probably that weird ‘Disney Girl’. I collect the merchandise, always talk about it, visit the parks regularly and get excited if anyone mentions it. But, my love goes so much deeper than that. In todays post I want to do something a little different, and tell you about what the Disney brand means to me. Many people love Disney, have fond memories from their childhood, love visiting the theme parks or enjoy the films. I’m not trying to “1-up” anyone or be “oh i love Disney more than you”, but try and express why it means so much to me.
I haven’t always been this obsessed with all things Disney. My family aren't massive Disney Parks people, we went to Walt Disney World once in 2001 but it wasn't a regular thing. My parents pretty much think ‘Disney is for kids’. Sure I always enjoyed it maybe a little bit more than your average person, but on August 11th 2012 something changed. During the Disneyland Paris 20th anniversary, Sky TV ran a deal so that all sky customers got a free day in the park. It just so happened that me and my boyfriend, Craig, were looking to book a Paris trip that year so thought, why not go to Disneyland for the day as well. From the moment I stepped into Disneyland, my heart filled with joy. It wasn't the characters or the rides, it was the atmosphere. The happiness i felt on that day overwhelmed me and inspired me to apply for the Walt Disney World International College Program. Fast forward 3 stressful months and I was accepted. I remember receiving my acceptance email like it was yesterday. I was at work and saw that an email had come through from YummyJobs on my phone. I knew that was it. My heart was pounding and my throat had closed up. As soon as I saw “Congratulations” I literally screamed, running to my co-workers in joy. Between visiting Disneyland and departing for Florida on June 3rd 2013 I became hopelessly in love with the Disney brand. I also made some of the most amazing friends who would be joining me at Disney World. That summer was the best summer of my whole life, with visiting Disneyland Resort after my program being the icing on the cake.
That Disneyland Paris trip and my Disney World summer experience may have re-ignited my love for Disney, but it is the spirit of the company that keeps it going. Yes I love the materialistic and physical aspects of it, I love collecting merchandise abit too much (my poor purse) and must buy every item of clothing with a Disney character on it, but its so so much more than that. Disney isn’t just about cute films and characters. It’s about hopes, dreams, love, friendship, happiness and wishes. It’s about working hard to achieve your goals and knowing that no matter how hard things get, you can still find the courage to keep going. The films, characters, parks; they are all just a reminder to keep smiling and believe in yourself. Disney inspires me, Disney pushes me to keep working hard, and most of all, Disney reminds me that even the strongest of can fall, we just have to pick ourselves back up again. “You may not realise it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you,” – Walt Disney. Walt himself faced so many struggles in his early career, going bankrupt and loosing the rights to Oswald being only two of them. Did he quit? No he did not. He kept trying, kept reaching for his dreams and the result of that is what we can see with the Disney brand today.
Thank you Walt Disney, for creating something truly magical and thank you for inspiring me to always believe in my dreams.
“Walt Disney once said “I hope we never loose sight of one thing, that it was all started by a mouse”. But we know, it was really all started by a man. A man with a dream, and a mouse.”
- Julie Andrews for One Man’s Dream