Anyone been back to wdw since the loss of a spouse

Melanie the tink fan

Earning My Ears
Joined
Feb 8, 2019
We took two trips to Disney in 2004, DH,and our two DD's. My Dana passed in 2007,I never thought I'd be able to afford to go again but I had a bit of a windfall so we are going with my sister. My oldest DD doesn't want to go. I'm sure I will get weepy around his favorite attractions and memories. I just don't want to bring my sister and DD down. How have you handled this?
 

goopysolelady

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 16, 2008
My youngest DD lost her husband in 2009; they'd honeymooned and been back to Disney a couple of times before he became ill. We had a trip scheduled that year but she wasn't ready to go back so she and DH went to Washington, DC and New York while I went back to DW with oldest DD and her family. We planned another family vacation in 2010 and she was hesitant but ready to go; she knew her 2 nieces would keep her mind off of things. We arrived a couple of days later than DD and her family so I had her get a plush Eeyore for her sister and attach a note. Eeyore was Waylon's favorite character and she had the CM working the check in area give Eeyore to her sister with a note saying we all knew she would have a hard time but we were all there to help her through it. The CM added "Pixie Dust" by having cupcakes waiting for her in our room with a "Have a Magical Trip" card attached. The first visit to Epcot was hard (their favorite park) but the sadness quickly vanished when she saw the joy of being at Disney World through the eyes of her 4 and 8 year old nieces. Each day was easier and she found herself smiling more and more with the happy memories the area brought back to her. She took "Eeyore" with her to all the parks and hugged him a little harder during the hard times. DW is the place you "forget your troubles"...the "happy place" and you'll be fine. Don't dwell on the sadness but remember the happy times. Thoughts and prayers for you and good luck. :hug: :tink:
 

Heluvsme

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 27, 2007
My sincere condolences go out to you. I have no firsthand experience, I just wanted to tell you to allow yourself to feel whatever washes over you at the time, and you may surprisingly find yourself crying happy tears at the many joyful memories you two created there.
❤❤
 
  • Alicefan

    We're all mad here
    Joined
    Jul 1, 2015
    Not a spouse but I did my first solo trip a week after my mom passed. I needed to get out of my house and go to my happy place. You will smile, you will cry but you will also find peace my friend. There was just something about doing something nice for myself because I had 3 days off and I knew nothing good would come of sitting at home thinking too much. I remember while I was sitting at Epcot during Illuminations, there were 2 stars or planets maybe, that were very bright and very close together. I chose to believe that they represented my mom and my grandmother being reunited. I found myself crying when Cinderella went by in the parade and I was grateful for the rain that day that covered up my tears. Cinderella was my mom's princess and probably my first introduction to Disney as a child. My mom was very overweight and just would not do anything to get herself healthy so she left this world at only 59 years old. I was full of emotions while I wandered the parks alone. I was angry, I was happy, I was sad and I was confused with all of the questions of what happens after we die, but there was something very healing about going to a place that my mom and I loved. I come from a Disney family but no one is quite the addict that I am. My Dad was mad that I went. I think everyone thought I was wrong for going to Disney World of all places as if I was blowing everything off and going to party or have fun. People just didn't understand and many offered to go with me, but I needed to be alone with my thoughts. It wasn't about having someone to ride rides with. It was about me and my mom. Your spouse would want you to go. They don't want us to stop doing the things we love. You'll be happy that you went and you'll go through many emotional times while there but it will be worth it. Prayers and healing vibes coming your way.
     

    goofyintoronto

    We the North! Lets go Raptors!
    Joined
    Mar 29, 2011
    Not a spouse but I did my first solo trip a week after my mom passed. I needed to get out of my house and go to my happy place. You will smile, you will cry but you will also find peace my friend.
    This was my experience as well, to a tee. I went to wdw a week or so after my mom had passed away...she was only 63. The trip was booked well before she even got ill suddenly...i was just so preoccupied i forgot to cancel the trip. Then she ended up passing away, so i ended up going on my trip. I just needed to get away alone to chill out. It was hard, not gonna lie. I did have a few moments where i cried. But overall it was a good move for me to go alone for sure. I don't regret it one bit.
     
  • mhf

    Mouseketeer? hah! Princess!
    Joined
    Sep 3, 2005
    We took two trips to Disney in 2004, DH,and our two DD's. My Dana passed in 2007,I never thought I'd be able to afford to go again but I had a bit of a windfall so we are going with my sister. My oldest DD doesn't want to go. I'm sure I will get weepy around his favorite attractions and memories. I just don't want to bring my sister and DD down. How have you handled this?
    I'm trying it solo in October. Not staying where we usually stayed, trying F&W for the first time. The only thing I will do that DH & I used to do is Soarin' and Test Track. Sending you hugs!
     

    Relishy57

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 14, 2019
    I went in 2013, 2 years after my husband passed. I went with DD and her fiancé. It was his first visit and although memories came back being with a newbie who was seeing it for the first time made it exciting again.
    I didn’t go to Illuminations though, just couldn’t cope with that as it was a favourite of ours.
    Time has passed and I’m now doing a solo trip in September I will be saying goodbye to Illuminations. As with so many things since it will be a bittersweet experience. Enjoy your vacation.
     

    jerseygal

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 1, 2008
    I hope that you find peace in your vacation. Sincere condolences. Hope that the good memories will make you smile. I can certainly understand;all of our trips to WDW have been with my DH. It would be so difficult going without him; think it would take me a very long time to want to go, but I would hope that the incredible memories would bring some warmth to my heart, hope that it is the same for you!:rose:
     

    Bjkandma

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 29, 2019
    I lost my husband on February 20, 2011. My daughter's 23rd birthday. I've been fortunate to go back to Disney numerous times since. My first trip, I took my 6 year old granddaughter. My husband, I and my granddaughter went May, 2010. It was extremely hard and still is, but I remember the happy memories we made. Every time I make it to the Magic Kingdom,especially near the castle, it's a time of reflection that I made it another year. (My husband and I had legal custody of our grandaughter). There is a sense of peace that comes over me, and I know he's never really left us! I hope you find peace!!!!
     
  • Jmldavidson

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    May 16, 2019
    My mom and dad were planning a Disney trip the day he went into the hospital. He passed away 3 days later from septic shock. 2 years later we are making his Disney trip wishes come true as we arrive at the Beach club this Tuesday the 16th. Our trip is going to be in honor of him and as a celebration of his life. My dad loved ice cream and ate it almost every evening as his nightly snack, so it's my mission to eat some sort of ice cream snack every day in memory of him. It's not much, but to us, it means everything.
     

    Relishy57

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 14, 2019
    My mom and dad were planning a Disney trip the day he went into the hospital. He passed away 3 days later from septic shock. 2 years later we are making his Disney trip wishes come true as we arrive at the Beach club this Tuesday the 16th. Our trip is going to be in honor of him and as a celebration of his life. My dad loved ice cream and ate it almost every evening as his nightly snack, so it's my mission to eat some sort of ice cream snack every day in memory of him. It's not much, but to us, it means everything.
    I hope you have a wonderful time and manage to eat plenty of ice cream.
    PS you sound very supportive and loving of your Mom ,she will need that as there will be some happy/sad moments for her. Hopefully the happy memories will be more frequent.
    We played Disney music at my husbands funeral including Illuminations. I’m sure I will wipe a tear or two away when I watch it again.
     

    AnnieBearJamboree

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    May 14, 2019
    I'm sending prayers, well wishes, good vibes, anything and everything to those in this thread working their way through a loss. I can't imagine the pain you're experiencing.

    Disney is so, so hard because you can plan everything so specifically. I'm going through a rough breakup with the love of my life and find myself wondering how I can plan a trip without him - without considering his interests and wants and needs. My advice to you, even as someone who isn't walking through all this grief, is to just do what feels right. Like you said, you may be weepy when you see his favorite show or ride or restaurant. You may think, "Well, I guess we don't need to stop there." Go in anyway. Even if it's not your favorite. Or avoid it entirely and head to your favorite attraction instead. Whatever you want.
     

    andie-j

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 10, 2019
    My DH passed away in 2016 and I am planning a trip with his now teen daughter (aka my "bonus" daughter) in 2021. He and I never went to Disney together (we were only married 4 months when he passed) but we had talked about it endlessly and really wanted to take his daughter (who was 10 when he passed suddenly and unexpectedly). I am expecting it to be an emotional trip for both of us which is why I am literally sinking my life's savings into the trip to make it the trip of a lifetime. Even though he won't be physically with us, my hope is to create special and lasting memories that he will be sharing right along with us. My main fear is becoming emotional in front of her. Since he has passed, she and I do quite a lot together, mostly a continuation of the fun things she did with her dad (concerts, water parks, sports events, etc.) but she never feels comfortable talking about anything sad. She is okay sharing happy memories, but any time someone gets emotional about him, she shuts down completely. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I will be able to hold it together for her! 😬

    Anyway, I never realized just how many of us have such strong emotional attachments to Disney! It's nice to know I'm in good company...I am sure we can all do this! There may be sad moments but I just like to think of the rewards. Best wishes to all of you...
     


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