To Infinity and Beyond…
That is one of my favorite lines from one of my favorite Disney/ Pixar movies “Toy Story.” Why? Because it taught me to strive to reach that far in my own life. As a little girl I used to sit myself in front of the television and go to a world of pure imagination that was called Disney. The movies and shows I would watch inspired me more than I can really explain. I’ve always been Disney crazed ever since I can remember and this led to my neighbors calling me Ambi Bambi by the age of two and my mom constantly calling me that ever since.
I remember even watching the advertisements for Walt Disney World before my favorite movies and I would tell myself that one day I would get the opportunity to go there. Most kids take for granted getting to go there, but growing up extremely poor all I could do was just dream of the day that I could go to the place where dreams come true. Then finally at the age of 21 I finally got to go to the place that I had been constantly wanting to go to since I could remember. I paid my way to go with my cousin
s and we stayed in Florida for a week exploring the parks. And the night that I finally got to sit in front of the castle and watch “Wishes” I knew right then and there that dreams really do come true.
While I was down in Florida one of my close friends was down there doing the Disney College Program. I didn’t know much about it beforehand just what I had seen her post on Facebook, but while I was down there I started getting so interested in this amazing opportunity. I messaged my friend about it and also talked to a variety of CPs out there and all of them encouraged me to go for it. After I got back from vacation I was so determined to make my dreams come true. I applied for Disney College Program immediately and couldn’t wait to start my dreams.
I’d like to tell you this is the part where all my dreams came true and I got immediately accepted into the DCP, but that’s not how it went. I left my dreams on the back burner when I met a guy who I thought was the one I was going to spend the rest of my life with. Even though I had vowed as a child never to do such a thing. After we broke up my life shattered into a million pieces. Not just because I lost the guy I fell in love with, but because I had placed all the happiness I had left in him.
After we broke up I knew I had to face a part of my life I didn’t want to face, and that was I hadn’t been truly happy on my own since I was 7. I became clinically depressed by the age of 8 years old. I was dealing with a difficult home life and relentless bullying from school. There was really no escape for me except whenever I would watch television (mainly Disney) or imagine a better life for myself. Maybe that’s the reason I have always had a strong connection to Disney is because when no one else was there telling me things would get better, Disney was. It was like the best friend I never had growing up.
At this time in my life I had also started an unhealthy habit of basing all my happiness/ self worth on other people. So it really wasn’t a surprise when my life spun out of control after the breakup so many years later. I had fallen in the same destructive pattern I was used to except 10 times worse. That was until I finally told myself one January day that enough was enough. I decided then I needed to change my life and this time the change would be for the better.
My ex told me one day that I had changed at one point in our relationship and at the time I couldn’t see that I had. I thought it was just him who had changed, but I came to realize what he had said was true. When we first started dating I had just come back from Disney/ traveling. During that time I got to see that there was a world out there much bigger than even I had imagined. It was the first time in my life I had really experienced doing what I wanted to do and that was the closest I felt to myself in a long time. But gradually I fell back into my old ways too scared to get out of the comfort zone I had set for myself for all of those years.
When I decided to change my life I knew I wanted to get that same passion and strive I had on vacation back into my life. This time I knew it was going to be different because I knew no obstacle, person, or even myself was going to stop me this time. I was determined to be happy again like I was when I was a tiny child and make all my dreams come true. I then started making huge changes in my life and worked towards several goals. Many of these goals I put on a dream board that I made. And little by little I was accomplishing each of my goals. And take a wild guess which goal I put splat in the center of it? None other than my dream of working at Walt Disney World.
A few days after I put that on the board I found out that Disney was accepting applications for the DCP and I quickly applied. I wasn’t expecting to hear back really soon, but that night I had gotten an email saying I had been accepted to move on to the phone interview. Right then and there I could feel my dreams dangling right in front of me.
Words cannot describe how nervous I was for that telephone interview. I had researched countless articles, watched so many YouTube videos, and written down a bunch of notecards just to try to do well on it. My interviewer was 15 minutes late and I could just feel the anxiety creeping up in me. I felt like I had completely messed up the interview which made the waiting game feel 10 times longer than it should have felt.
They don’t warn you how horrible the waiting for acceptance or a NLIC for the program actually is. I think I checked my email probably at least 50 times a day and no I’m not exaggerating. Then finally one day after school I came home to open a Congratulations email from Disney. Words cannot describe how extremely excited I was! It blew my mind. I literally just sat on my bed staring at at the e-mail for I don’t know how long just trying to convince myself that it was real. That this was really happening to me.
Some people may say “Ah yeah the Disney College Program that’s nice, but it’s not going to take you anywhere in your life.” But I know for a fact that this program is going to change my life. It is a chapter in my life that is going to lead me so much closer to my dreams becoming a reality. It also gave me the confidence to start this blog and other things I was too scared to do before. To anyone reading this feeling like their dreams are so far out there just know that they are really within your reach you just have to have the will power to go after them. There are many dreamers in the world, but the people who actually get to live them are the people that pursue them with all that they have.