This is my Masterpiece

This is my Masterpiece

Friday, December 20, 2013

Aladdin… A whole new world.

For a long time the theme song to Aladdin has had a special significance to me.  Here are the lyrics:

I can show you the world
Shining, shimmering, splendid
Tell me, princess, now when did
You last let your heart decide?

I can open your eyes
Take you wonder by wonder
Over, sideways and under
On a magic carpet ride

A whole new world
A new fantastic point of view
No one to tell us no
Or where to go
Or say we're only dreaming

A whole new world
A dazzling place I never knew
But when I'm way up here
It's crystal clear
That now I'm in a whole new world with you
Now I'm in a whole new world with you

Unbelievable sights
Indescribable feeling
Soaring, tumbling, freewheeling
Through an endless diamond sky

A whole new world
Don't you dare close your eyes
A hundred thousand things to see
Hold your breath - it gets better
I'm like a shooting star

I've come so far
I can't go back to where I used to be

A whole new world
Every turn a surprise
With new horizons to pursue
Every moment red-letter
I'll chase them anywhere
There's time to spare
Let me share this whole new world with you

A whole new world
That's where we'll be
A thrilling chase
A wondrous place
For you and me

Gavin gave us a whole new world.  

He encouraged us to love life, voraciously.  He gave us reason to celebrate every breath, every step and every triumph.  He taught us to look at the miracles of the universe from the blade of grass growing in the crack in the sidewalk all the way up to the sliver of silver moon against the bluest of skies perched atop fluffy white clouds.  He showed us it all matters; everyone matters.  He revealed to us though we are all small, though we all need a hand from time to time, we can accomplish great things with great love… the smallest kindness can transform hearts.

When I found out I was carrying a child with Down syndrome, I “let my heart decide.” It has been a life of “indescribable feelings,” and he is my “shooting star.”

So I guess it is no surprise to you that I am crying before the house lights go down.  Hugging Gavin, crying happy tears on my magic carpet ride of a life he has brought to me.

The theatre is beautiful.  Agra bar is part of the stage and the theatre has been built around the Aladdin theme.  It is spectacular, Broadway quality.  The show starts… and it is a dazzling show.  No inch of the theatre is left untouched by the magic… isles, ceiling and balconies… film clips, pyrotechnics, people suspended on fly wire or disappearing through the floor, giant dancing elephants and glowing camels.

I haven’t mentioned Genie yet.  A-Ma-Zing!  Funny, timely comedy… he doesn’t miss a current event or a beat.  He is fantastic!

After robust applause we are making our way out of the theatre and my mom reaches out to grab my son’s shoulder.  She doesn’t want to lose him in the crowd.  He turns to look to see who is holding onto him and she realizes it isn’t Gavin.  It is another boy who also happens to have Down syndrome.  His name is Austin and he is 14.  We have one of those “you’re my family” moments right there in the lobby.  We share one of our “pin trading” pins with Austin… and we are crying the happy tears again.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Disneyland Opening Day and Now

One of the treasures of our trip to Disneyland was going with my mom.  She was there at the beginning and it was a delight to see her nostalgia.  I have a sketch of her from Disneyland's opening that I just love. 

I can't even imagine what it must have been like to be a Disneyland then.  Her dad, my grandfather had a display on Main Street, "Lights Across America," and with his company, Century Lighting, their illumination engineering was in the design of several of the attractions.  My grandfather also was part of the original "Dancing Waters" design in Las Vegas which was the infant to the glorious "World of Color" we enjoyed during our visit.

Disney Cast Members were great to my mom... made her feel like a celebrity and all.  They gave her a special "Honorary Citizen" button and took her behind the scenes to have her picture taken in front of the castle (that was closed because of the filming of The View.)

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Radiator Springs -- That. Was. AWESOME!

So after fast passing tickets for World of Color, our first ride of the trip is Radiator Springs Racers. 

As we make our way into the entrance of the attraction I am telling my mom it is like Autotopia and the cast member corrects me, “No you don’t drive the cars here.”  I am thinking, oh that’s even better.   

Then she says and it goes up to 45 miles per hour.  Okay.  Not freaking out… yet.  My mom will be celebrating her 70th birthday in a few months.  And she is a young 70 but I still think gentle rides are appropriate… no need to create a cardiac event.

While we are waiting one of the cars tips over and they have to spend some time (like 15 minutes) fixing it.  Still not freaking out.

We board the ride and are advised how to strap in.  Not freaking out much but the heart is racing a bit faster.  I look over at my mom and her face mirrors what I am feeling, “What have I done?”

With a jerk and a bump we are off riding through Radiator Springs, up hills and around curves… the road splits and another car is beside us… the starting gun pops and we are racing fast!  Whipping around curves, up and down… my hair is flying everywhere and I am holding on too tight to let go until we are at the end of the ride when I reach over to squeeze my mom’s arm.

“I am so sorry mom, I had no idea…”

(Mom replies,)  “That. Was. AWESOME!”