Last week was a tough one.
As I reported here about a month ago, Disneyland's Court of Angels was rumored to close this past Saturday, September 28. Disney never confirmed this officially but the fact that the rumors were swirling and they did NOT deny it was pretty telling.
In the past month since I heard this news, I went to Disneyland twice. I went for my birthday weekend / friends' wedding and was there a few days. The following weekend I went back to hang out with a friend who was visiting from out of town. Both weekends I reminded myself, several times, that I needed to visit Court of Angels. Both weekends, I forgot. I may need Ginko Biloba or to do more of those computer programs that strengthen your brain, or whatever. (Side note - my computer really wants me to autocorrect "Biloba" to "Bologna.")
Since we are moving THIS UPCOMING WEEKEND and I have a Hoarders-level of crap to pack up, I knew there was no way I was going to Disneyland again before Court of Angels closed. Going would be super irresponsible of me. I was sad and knew I would regret not having that final goodbye with my favorite little corner of my favorite place in the world.
I thought back to my last visit with her earlier this month. I sat with her for a few minutes and held her hand. I showed her pictures of our new house on my iPhone. I told her we'd figure out a way for her to come and see it in person. I showed her my Dumbo Double Dare medals. She didn't quite understand what they were for but said they were really heavy and must be important. I only stayed a couple hours because I had to go home and do blog work. I said goodbye and see you soon, and that was it.
Over the last few years, I can't tell you the amount of times I would talk to my grandmother on the phone and she would tell me I was always welcome to visit and my response would be "I will soon, I'm just so busy."
I'm just so busy.
Yes, I'm trying to reinvent myself which means pretty much working two full time jobs, plus my travel agent job, and dealing with house buying and moving. And before house buying there was honeymoon planning, and before honeymoon planning there was wedding planning. I always have some excuse.
And every once a while, something happens that reminds me that while I'm busy focusing on my future, the present is passing me by.
I slept pretty poorly on Thursday and Friday nights. Restless over regrets ... what could I have said/done differently? And no matter what, everyone asks themselves these questions when there's a loss. Everyone says, "I should have done this better" or "I wish I had visited/called/said more." And at some point you have to make peace with the past, stop living with regrets, and move forward into the future while taking these life lessons with you.
I work up Saturday and decided to stop putting aside things that are important to me because I'm too busy. I will always be too busy. No regrets.
For the third time in three weeks, I made the hour long trip to Disneyland, and I said goodbye to Court of Angels.
There were a lot of us there. We all offered to take pictures for each other. At some point the band came out from upstairs and threw beads down at us. I smiled and giggled like a kid because that's what Disneyland does to me.
I left and went on Haunted Mansion Holiday. At that point it was nearly time to meet up with a friend for lunch. I decided to walk by Court of Angels one last time. This time, it was completely empty and quiet, except for the faint chatter from the New Orleans Square walkways. I put my hand on the rail and walked slowly up the stairs one final time. I overlooked the courtyard from the top and really soaked it in, looking at every corner, every window and door, every little detail. Then an employee opened a door and scared the bejeezus out of me. I walked down the stairs, took a couple more pictures, and walked away for the final time.
Did the trip cost me a huge chunk of my day? Yes. Did it mean I'd be up all night packing? Yep. Did it mean there'd be less blog posts this week. Uh-huh. Do I have any regrets? Nope.
Nanny, I should have called/visited/said that I loved you more. Thank you for always being there for me and loving me unconditionally. Thank you for letting me stay up way past my bedtime and eat ice cream while watching sitcom reruns. Thank you for being at our wedding even though it was challenging. Thank you for being a positive influence in my life. I will miss you every day.
Charlotte Madeleine Moore
March 2, 1922 - September 26, 2013
Wedding Photos: Root Photography
Court of Angels photos: My personal collection