Diaries Magazine

Growing Up Floridian; A Blessing and a Curse!

Posted on the 14 January 2014 by #hartchronicles @jewelsjaye


Who doesn’t love a good theme park? I did.– Until native Florida livin’ did me in!

I live in the greatest state in all the land; right in the backdoor of the greatest theme parks in the entire world! (Yep. It’s my blog and I’m biased.)I am a homegrown Floridian, and darn proud of it!  The problem with that is… you can barely say the word “Disney” around me without an instantaneous eye-roll, and/or cringe!

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It’s a Blessing:   From the ripe old age of 5-6ish, my parents made it so that I could repeatedly visit every single park that Florida has to offer! (We have all 100 of the $20+ souvenir pics accounted for!) And because I’m a product of the State of Florida public school system, here’s the usual… (all native Floridians will agree.)

End-of-the-Year school field trips grades 5-8= Theme Park

EOY class trips grades 9-11= Theme Park (or some attraction in Orlando)

Sr. Grad Night= Theme Park

Club-sponsored EOY trips grades 6-12= Theme Park (or some attraction in Orlando)

I’m extremely blessed as I never missed a school trip, ever! We frequented as a family during spring break almost annually (or we took a break from the parks and traveled to the beach).  All in all, Mom and Dad truly paid the cost to enrich my childhood, and for that I’m ever grateful!

And it’s a Curse: That same Florida upbringing has driven me to the point of openly declaring

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that… I am pretty much over all theme parks, and do not (I repeat– DO NOT) care to return until I have children of my own. (Yes, I know I’ll be back someday with my kid, a smile, and a high-pitched voice of excitement, but I’ll cross that river when I get there.) Families save money and plan well in advance, anxiously preparing to visit the place “where dreams come true” while I, on the other hand, actively avoid it at all costs. (I mean I’m literally running in the opposite direction screaming, “Not It!”) All I can think about are the people, and the strollers, and the humidity, and the heat …(Yes, I blacked out once from dehydration in the front of a mile –long roller coaster line and had to be dragged to a random backroom to hydrate and regain consciousness. I digress.)… and the walking, and the lines, lines, lines… even with the FastPass–ugh!– Did I mention the people? Two years ago, I went to a park for the 1,000th time because my husband (native Mississippian) had never been, and it almost did me in– literally. I thought it was a great idea until we pulled into the parking lot, and it all came rushing back to memory. It also happened to be 94 degrees outside. The fact that I knew where most of the rides were, almost completely free of the map, was a problem for me. The only thing that kept me sane was that “1st timer”twinkle in his eye (and my period of being an awestruck observer was short-lived as makeup and sweat rolled down my face and my shirt stuck to my back)! I’m not proud of it, but I am indeed calloused and admittedly not all that happy while visiting the “happiest place on earth”!

As a best method of building stamina and a hope for my unborn child(ren), theme parks have been scratched (even burned) off of my to-do list for years! Just so you know– I’m avoiding them, all of them, by any means necessary– so don’t even ask!



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