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widget
11-12-2005, 06:11 AM
Our tickets came yesterday and ive hidden them away from the boys as they have no idea we are going this December to Florida. They think we are going to Spain or Malta if I can get a bargin!! My youngest turns 12 next Saturday and after that I plan to tell them by using a treasure hunt which ive devised so they can build up letter clues which will tell them where to find two gifts ive wrapped which are Disney tshirts I bought in DLP last week. Cant wait. Im getting excited but now the heebie jebbies are setting in.
Two years ago my husband of 17 years walked out amidst much agro. At first we didnt speak as we hated each other. Then I decided that I needed to move on and so used my savings and have been saving ever since too so I could take the boys back to Florida. Then about 4 months ago we started to get on well with their dad and things were looking fairly calm. Now after making friends I told him about the trip. He asked to come and luckily at the time he managed to get a ticket that fitted with our trip. Suddenly he flipped his lid again and has decided he can live without us as we should f*** off and go ruin someone elses life etc etc. He told me to file for a divorce and now my confidence is knocked sideways.
I sat in my bathroom last night with the tickets and cried my eyes out - but not really sure why. I am now thinking am I mad to take my kids to Florida alone, with all the luggage?? Will I cope?? Sure, I think I will but looking at the tickets it suddenly became real. We are going to Florida. 9 hours away from home. I know others on here have managed as single parents and I have been on holidays around England no problem. Just needed to air my thoughts and get them off my chest so I can shake myself back to reality and get back the confidence. Its just that I was all prepared to go when I originally booked knowing it would be by myself with the boys but this cat and mouse game he plays has made me feel yuk! Can anyone advise how I get over this cr*p sh*t man and get my excited holiday feelings back.

JohnnySharp2
11-12-2005, 06:21 AM
Sometimes getting away from it all and forgetting about your problems helps a lot.
In that aspect you are going on holiday to the right place.

The look on your kid's faces when firstly they realise they are going to Florida plus the hours of pleasure they will get out there - just watch for those smiling, excited faces - it will be the holiday of a lifetime.

There is no reason why you cannot cope with the luggage etc and I am sure your children will help out too - I think once they know they are going, have a chat with them, explain that there is a wonderful time ahead but that they need to look after and support you - they are old enough to do so.

It is difficult to advise regarding your other worries and matters, I have a little boy who is Autistic (he is perfect, bonny very active lad) but just cannot talk - he loves Florida though and has a brilliant time each year that we go.

You go and have a fantastic holiday and forget about everything else - you have many friends on these boards.

Good Luck.

Amyrlin
11-12-2005, 06:23 AM
Widget I am sure you are going to have a great time, better than you would have had if an enstranged partner with you and you would have been worrying about what he wanted as well as yourself and the boys.

It is understandable and natrual that you are upset, it is a type of grieving for what might have been, 17 years ia a long time. A holiday is just what you need, and when you see the boys faces after that treasure hunt that will help make a change.

I have done disney as a single parent with three (2 boys and a girl), it is great, you will be fine, everything over there is easier for a single parent, fromt he service in the resturants, and buffest so that all children that are picky eaters can find somehting they like, to transportasion. They will be so existed and use so much energy they will be tired and sleep well and night, and at this age they will emember this surprise for the rest of thier lives!

best thing is to start planning for the small things that will make the holiday special,where are you staying when you get there, and perhaps we can help you with some ideas for the little things that will make a magical journey even more special.

Laurafoster
11-12-2005, 06:36 AM
Im sure you will be fine, and like Johnny said - the look on the kids faces will make it all worth while. I have a friend who is a single parent and she said there is a bookBirnbaums disney with Kids - she said she found it really helpful when she went!

Bellis Belle
11-12-2005, 06:55 AM
Widget

I can not pretend to know how you feel, nor can I imagine going to Disney on my own. But having just come back I saw loads of single parents over there. And they had toddlers and strollers to deal with as well. My youngest is 11 and she was fantastic. She helped at the carousel collecting our luggage and was very mature. It sounds to me like this is just what you need, and what better place to go for fun and relaxation. I think you need to wash that man right out of your hair. Travelling alone will give you your confidence and independance back. You know what. You are a strong independant woman and you do not need a man in your life. Have a wonderful time and then go back and rub his nose in it. Tell him you had a fabulous time and was such a better holiday without him. What a total LOSER he is. I wish you lots of love and happiness and disney magic :wizard: :grouphug:

mark&sue
11-12-2005, 08:36 AM
:grouphug:

You said it yourself when you booked up you knew you could do it and have been determined to save and I know you can do it now.

Good luck, have a great time and let your hair down. Your kids will always remember this all their lives.


Susan

gilld
11-12-2005, 10:46 AM
You're just having a bit of a panic - and who can blame you - but when you calm down you will see that you are more than able to manage your holiday.

What a great Mum you are to be doing this for your sons and they will appreciate that, and that they need to help out a little.

If you have booked the whole holiday through a tour operator there will be reps to advise you if necessary.

Take a deep breath, keep planning your surprise and have a wonderful time - you and your sons deserve it!

Don't forget to tell us how it all goes.

Miffy2003
11-12-2005, 11:01 AM
What a tough time for you widget. :grouphug:

I agree with the others - I think yes it will be a little more tricky to manage luggage etc on the planes but it will definitely be do-able. And the travel bit is such a small part of the holiday, it will be absolutely worth it when you arrive :)


Good luck - I am sure you won't regret doing this and as others said, sometimes you need to "get away from it all" for your own sanity. I would not hesitate for a moment to take my 2 DDs to Florida on my own :)

Best wishes!

Karen

widget
11-12-2005, 11:21 AM
Thank you all so much for those lovely responses. I feel quite overcome - so ive decided im coming over there and to heck with everything!! Its so nice to know there are such solid people such as yourselves out on these boards offering good advice and a shoulder. Feeling much better now. Have pulled myself up by the boot straps, dusted myself off and am feeling more positive. I can do this and by golly gosh I will! :earseek: :grouphug:

grannyed
11-12-2005, 11:44 AM
Good for you.

Just you and your boys to think about - have plenty of lazy days in with the active ones - and let your boys look after you a bit sometimes - they will love it and feel grown up and you will deserve it

isla bonita
11-12-2005, 01:33 PM
It will be wonderful holiday away. Some time with your 2 children by yourself will be great. I am sure there will be hard times ahead. Thats when you head the rest room and take a shower and let the tears fall. Afterwards you come out with a new face. Good luck and have a great time.

mark&sue
11-12-2005, 02:05 PM
and don't forget to come back and tell us what a great time you had when you get back.

We all will be thinking of you.



Susan

Supercod
11-12-2005, 02:10 PM
Hi Widget, I am not old enough to give you wise advice but you have got 2 boys and one you said is almost 12, that means it wonít belong before you have 2 men in your life that love you and not 2 boys (mind you have to go past that stage from 16 to 21 when it looks like they are not improving but honest we all get over that one LOL) anyways, they sound old enough to be helping out so defiantly shouldnít feel on your own.

I think the best way is to plan the holiday out, or at least the 2 important parts, how I get to my hotel and how I get from my hotel to the Airport. Once you done the getting from the Airport to the Hotel part the rest is easy. So plan the thing, make sure you know what your doing when the plane lands and also what your going to do if you planned transport doesnít go to plan, if you have a plan and a backup you feel much better.

Being worried about things is about not feeling like you have control, if you know what your doing and know what your doing when something doesnít go to plan then you more feel confident. Also donít let little things ruin the holiday, I see so many people getting wound up because something never went the way they wanted, sure not great but if you think, hey I am in a fabulous place and loads of good things have happened so really this one little thing that didnít work out/didnít happen, not a big deal.

Also think about what happens in an emergency, if people know what to do, especially kids they will go in to auto pilot. Give everyone a print out of numbers to call at home as well as address of hotel, phone number and so on (in case they get lost). Also photocopy the picture page of your passports and put a copy in all the luggage as well as one copy in your handbag (make a note of holiday insurance details for everyone), a bit over kill but if your passport is stolen, you get back in to the UK a lot quicker with all the right details at hand.

Ah, an most of all think, time away with your special guys, it will be fun and itís a memory they will remember, so be happy, as you done a lovely thing for them, even if they donít realise the effort you went to for it.

Ware Bears
11-12-2005, 03:02 PM
Widget, you will be fine, you and your boys will have a much better time just the three of you. Lots of :wizard: and :grouphug: to you!

disneyholic family
11-13-2005, 12:49 AM
Hi Widget...

first of all you should be extraordinarily proud of yourself that you have managed to save for a trip like this.....that is amazing and wonderful and that alone is reason for you to feel great about yourself...

as for going it alone, i flew with my two kids (boy and girl) when they were 8 and 10 years old (10 years ago).....i'm not a single mom, but my husband couldn't go that year and we wanted to go.....so we flew (flying 15 hours including a change of planes in Kennedy airport in New York).....even though i'd done the trip before, that was the first time i flew alone with the kids and the first time i travelled at all after having been diagnosed with a life threatening chronic disease......so it was a bit scary as well (i had the kids both wear all of our contact information in a belly pack in case i had an attack while in florida....with emergency phone numbers and things like that)...

we spent 2 wonderful weeks in orlando....we stayed in the All Star Music resort and had a great time....we didn't try to do everything but just had a slow and easy time.....it was a trip we all remember well to this day....

finally, as for your creep of a husband.....you should also be very proud of yourself for surviving the likes of him.....i have so many friends who have been toyed with by ex-husbands who sound like yours....it's really important to realize that it is NOT you.....it's HIM....don't let his weakness and shortcomings drag you down....it's clear that you're a strong person (the fact that you take care of your children every day proves that) and you'll survive him.....and you'll have a magical time on this trip....

widget
11-13-2005, 10:31 AM
Thank you all once again for these wonderful thought provoking words.
Isla Bonita - thats exactly what I did (were you the one in the soap dish that pushed the soap into the bath??!??) I got under the shower, had a good cry, then came out dried off and began listing things to pack. Practicalities are amazing things that see you through when you doubt yourself.
Supercod - super ideas thank you. I will write out those emergency numbers as I am sure it will make my boys feel more in control too. I actually took the advice a step further and asked my sister if she would be prepared to come up to Gatwick and collect the boys if anything happened and I had to stay behind (well you never know - might overindulge the food and get stuck on a ride!!). She said that she would even fly out to Florida to pick them up if needs be - now thats a sister in a million!!
And disneyholic - those words mean so much - thankyou :flower:
Am much more positive now. P*g of a husband has now had second thoughts about how he treated us and has asked me not to file for a divorce. I havent even got around to it but I wont tell him that - let him stew!
When I get home, dont forget, if anyones ever passing my door, pop in for a drink and a sticky bun - my door is always open to good friends :sunny:

disneyholic family
11-13-2005, 10:39 AM
i've never refused a sticky bun yet.. :)

have a great time (and don't take hubby along -he'll ruin the trip)....

widget
11-13-2005, 11:11 AM
Beth!! :rotfl2: I nearly never made it then!! Just almost chocked on me sticky bun!!! Take him along??!!? Id rather take my mother - and thats saying something!!!

ERICS MUM
11-13-2005, 12:54 PM
Beth!! :rotfl2: I nearly never made it then!! Just almost chocked on me sticky bun!!! Take him along??!!? Id rather take my mother - and thats saying something!!!

Talking of taking your mother with you .......that's exactly what I usually do!!! My mum is nearly 82 and probably needs as much looking after as your 2 youngs sons!!! Sometimes I feel overwhelmed with the responsibility, pretty much like you do, but then my practical side kicks in. If I need a bit of help with the luggage, getting to my room, ordering meals etc I ask for help.

It's so easy in the US to get assistance from the"busboys" at the hotel who will park the car for me, the bell captain who will arrange for bags to be taken to our room, the porters at the airport who will plop mum into a wheelchair so we can get to the immigration desk in a reasonable time, the girl on reception who arranges for us to have a room by the elevator etc. etc.

People are usually so kind and helpful, I just make sure I take along a good supply of $1 notes for tipping, and then I'm all set.

You just need to feel "in control", do what you can, get help for other things, and "sod" the things you can't do - nobody's perfect.

Just imagine the feeling of achievement you will have when you get home, and the experience you and your sons will create that not even your husband can destroy. During your holiday, why not take lots of pictures, collect little souvenirs (tickets, menus etc) and when you get home you and the boys can make a memories scrapbook that you can look back on for ever.

Good luck, stay strong and enjoy every step -from planning the trip onwards.


Linda :paw:

Eljay
11-29-2005, 04:08 PM
Widget, how are your plans coming along?
If you need any suggestions for a "grown-up evening without the boys" ;) just give a shout out, I'm sure we have lots of ideas!

Off the top of my head...
Raglan Road, the brand new awesome Irish Pub at Pleasure Island. :shamrock:
Jelly Rolls, a dueling pianos/sing-along bar at the Boardwalk. :drinking1
The Rose & Crown restaurant/pub at UK in Epcot. :wave:
Lots of friendly locals as well as WDW visitors at these places. :sunny:

kristieuk
11-30-2005, 01:24 AM
I'm a bit of a latecomer to this thread, but I just wanted to add my support. You are doing a wonderful thing, and you will absolutely cope. I can understand your panic, but that's caused by the horrible situation that has been put on you, not by your inability to cope. You have obviously coped with everyday life for a long time, and that is, imho, way harder and way less fun than a Florida holiday!

I'm so sorry that you are having to deal with this horrible situation, but you will have a wonderful holiday. It's amazing how many people will help you when they see that you are on your own (with your luggage etc), and your boys are old enough to do what they can. Just take a deep breath and do it.

Your boys are very lucky to have a Mum like you!

widget
11-30-2005, 08:41 AM
Thanks for those words of support. Plans are now coming together. I held the grand treasure hunt last Saturday and after finding 10 clues my two boys found their presents of the Tshirts and some dollars (which I have quickly nicked back for the 'pot'!!). My youngest bounced around the room so much the christmas tree fell sideways! (useless floating floor system!!) My oldest was more reserved but had tears in his eyes. On the Sunday I found a hand made card from him in the kitchen which said thank you mum for arranging this great holiday - heres to moving forward. I had to take another one of those flippin showers I can tell you! Amazing how sore your eyes can look when you, er, get soap in them isnt it! I didnt realise how badly all this tooing and froing with my husband was affecting my oldest. But it made me even more determined to push ahead.
So, ive bought new clothes for the holiday and body warmers just in case; got the suitcases from the attic; written loads of lists (and then listed them ;) ) and put to the back of my mind any fears.
Ive photocopied all my information and my oldest will take a copy of them in his luggage just in case. My sister has said she will come and collect the kids if anything goes wrong and I cant get home with them (y'know dodgy prawns; backside stuck on Dumbo; met a grand floridian :rotfl: ) even said she would fly out - now thats a sister to love!! Ive come to the conclusion too that I baby my children waaayyy too much and have realised that they are young men now and capable of sharing some of the burden of a holiday (and the heaviest case!!!) I never thought of them like this until they gave me their lists of things they would like to take (ususally I do all this) and my youngest gave me his penny jar contents (just in case mum!! :lovestruc )
We will be browsing City Walk this year too as weve never done this. That Jellyrolls sounds cool too and of course the Piano Man at POR. Are there any restrictions on children coming into bars? They are 12 and 15.
Oh, and as a final note to my pathetic other half. I made the immensely saddening but somehow enlightening decision to see a solicitor and get my divorce under way. My kids and myself have been through enough and my marriage certificate isnt worth the paper its written on. So im definately forging ahead in this life.
So thanks to everyone who has offered advice and support. I still get the odd butterfly and seed of doubt but im going to Florida and ya boo sucks to everything else!!!!!! :teeth: :banana: :cheer2: :wizard:

Tink78
11-30-2005, 08:58 AM
Your post made me go cold, and well up.

You will be fine as a single parent.
There are lots of single parents who take their kids to Orlando.

It's the happiest, friendliest place on earth.
There will be plenty of people willing to help you out with your luggage etc.

So try not to worry, get packing, and go and have yourself a blooming lovely time.

Sending :grouphug: and :wizard: to you to make you feel better.

x

Eljay
11-30-2005, 09:24 AM
That Jellyrolls sounds cool too and of course the Piano Man at POR. Are there any restrictions on children coming into bars? They are 12 and 15.


The boys will be welcome at Raglan Road and the Rose & Crown, but for Jellyrolls you must be at least 21.

Best of luck with all of your decisions, stay strong & confident! :flower:

urglewurgle
11-30-2005, 09:30 AM
Just wanted to say I hope you guys have a great time! you sound like a wonderful mother... and you all deserve a magical holiday!

(((hugs)))

Rain
11-30-2005, 09:53 AM
Have a really wonderful time with your little men! :grouphug:

tialucy
11-30-2005, 10:13 AM
I wouldn't worry about not being able to cope with the travelling side of things. I'm sure the kids will help out with the luggage..... when my son was younger he was always at the luggage belt waiting to pull our bags off. Kids are very helpful especially when they are excited. I love the idea of the treasure hunt, your children's faces will be a picture.

What that monster of a husband did to you was awful and I could just..... well I won't say!! but I'm glad you're not letting your feelings bottle up, it's always good to have a good cry. You can't change what's happened, the main thing is to move on and be positive at all times. Don't dwell on things especially while you're away. You will have a great time out there and you will create some wonderful memories for your children. Have a really wonderful time. :goodvibes

carolfoy
11-30-2005, 10:17 AM
Widget, I've just caught up with your post and can totally sympathise with your dilemmas, I've just returned from a fab trip and can honestly say you'll have a marvellous time, I took it upon myself to be Tour Guide Barbie for our group of 6, I'm also a single parent but had my MUm and three non-travelling friends along, Yes it is hard work but a bit of time out now and then and some explainations as to why we're doing things this way, why we need to go now, why we need to get a move on etc do help things along. Don['t forget a basic plan each day and run through things with your kids so they'll understand a bit better the reasons for leaving a park early or missing a certain ride and they'll be fine.
Good luck and I'm sure it'll be the most rewarding experience yet in a long line of struggling singlehood!

George05
11-30-2005, 11:13 AM
Your children must be really proud of you being there mum, i am sure your children will help you! your have a fanstatic time all of you a real holiday your remember forever.
Have a great time always ask if your not sure about something i found everyone so helpful.

VSL
11-30-2005, 01:09 PM
Have a great time!

widget
12-02-2005, 02:21 AM
:grouphug: :love2: :wave2: Thanks everyone! Wow, last full week of school for boys! Dragged out cases and checked over zips, handles and wheels. Its coming together!!

cazzie
12-02-2005, 03:11 AM
Your boys sound wonderful, I am sure you are all going to have a fantastic time. :goodvibes

scottishwee35
12-07-2005, 11:43 AM
Hi

Have a great holiday and i am sure you will be fine as your lovely boys will help each together out with luggages etc. Please don't worry, so enjoy your holiday as I am sure it will be fabulous times. :sunny:

Scottishwee35 :cool1:

manning
12-12-2005, 10:38 PM
When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires will come to you

If your heart is in your dreams, no request is too extreme
When you wish upon a star as dreamers do

(Fate is kind, she brings to those who love
The sweet fulfillment of their secret longing)

Like a bolt out of the blue, fate steps in and sees you thru
When you wish upon a star, your dreams come true


Enjoy your trip!! :goodvibes :goodvibes