We thought a lot in advance about what this experience would be like for Abby. Disney is obviously exhausting for any five year old but what about a five year old who tired from a walk around the block? How much would we have to slow down to accommodate her?
To try to deal with it in advance we rented a double jogging stroller from a local rental place (not the uncomfortable Disney ones). This would give her a way to ride from attraction to attraction while getting some rest. We made sure to pack plenty of snacks and drinks to keep her filled up with energy. We even resigned ourselves to letting her have some good old sugar when necessary. ;D This worked for about the first three hours.
We got into what would be our first long line and quickly realized this was not going to work well. Even though it wasn't that hot (about 75) we was drained after standing for half an hour. I started to panic at the thought of either holding all 32 pounds of her her through line after line (and killing my back) or having to sit out of rides with her. Neither one seemed like a good option.
I then remembered on the Disney site that they outlines the measures they go to in order to accommodate people with disabilities. Although we don't tend to think of her as "disabled" these are the times that her "differences" are glaring. I found a young woman working there and asked her about how we might be able to work around this problem. They were SO helpful.
She outlined what they like to do and she sent us to guest services immediately to get started. We informed them that we have someone in our group with a "disability" and we were given a "red card". This gives you access to the rides through the Fast Pass lines so you generally wait about ten minutes for a ride instead of an hour or more. They usually only write them for a group of 6 but we got one for our whole group. So at each line we flashed our card and walked right on.
For one short moment I felt a pang of guilt (not sure if that is the right word) about getting a "reward" for her disability but then I thought how much she deserved it. Should she have to miss out or be too exhausted to enjoy herself? NO!
Posted by Kristen Fescoe