On Disneyland Not Reopening… Why My Heart Hurts

As most are aware now, the Disneyland reopening guidelines are so ridiculously impossible, that it looks like Disneyland cannot reopen until Covid-19 is a thing of the past. And this makes us (Disneylanders) all so sad. And afraid. Can Disneyland survive? What will it look like if/when it does reopen. What are the lasting effects of this? Will Disney sue? Who else will sue? (There’s a court case against Newsom on the docket today about his overstepping in general). What about not just Orange County residents, but all of Southern California? What about their livelihoods? Their communities? Families?

I become quite incoherent if I even try to say the name “Newsom” to explain him or even read the headlines anymore. And in spite of what some think, Disneyland is not just a theme park. Some of the comments I saw on Twitter ridiculing those of us who have found so much more from Disneyland. “Look at those white people…” Please stick to your own lane – I do believe you have enough problems. And Disneylanders are not it.

I struggled to get to sleep last night – my usual state whenever I’m overly-stimulated in the evening – much like coffee, I can’t really handle too much drama after lunch – lol! I woke up this morning and wrote in my Disney Studios diary with my Napa Rose pen while sipping my coffee. Can Napa Rose survive? Will the chefs/staff have moved on to other ventures and not return? What will Napa Rose become then?  This is one of our favorite places in all of the Disneyland Resort.

Disneyland is one reason I could never stay in Florida for too long (and why we live in nearby Las Vegas). The Magic Kingdom at WDW can never replace Disneyland. True, I admit to having an emotional attachment to Disneyland and Orange County, California. It’s the one special piece left of my childhood, of family. When you’re in Florida, you can text or call or write to your family. Not when Disneyland *is* your family. I loved growing up in Orange County. Disneyland. Newport Beach. Knott’s Berry Farm. The Catholic Missions. Bower’s Museum. The Dodgers and later the Angels. Balboa Island (captured in Letters on Balboa Island). It was all magical!

But maybe the main reason is that it was, as I look back and view my life, knowing what I know now and didn’t know consciously then. Growing up near Disneyland was my compensation for not growing up with my father, living with his own family in L.A. County, kept apart by the adults in my life. All for selfish reasons. All those “What if” questions. What would it have been like growing up with my father? What would our first trip to Disneyland be like? The beach? The music we could have shared together. The father/daughter dance. Thankfully, I did meet and spend some time with him before he died – you can read that story here.

I didn’t have that irreplaceable time with my father during my childhood. But I did have Disneyland. And now it’s gone. At least for now.

I hate this year and what it’s doing to people. I try to remain positive, hoping for the best, but also fearing the worst. Yes, we could plan a trip to WDW, but it just isn’t the same.

 

About Kathy

Novelist & Music Producer