DISCLOSURE: This post is spooktacularly sponsored by Disneyland Resort, Mickey’s Halloween Party and The Twilight Zone™ Tower of Terror at Disney’s California Adventure. TheFABMom was provided tickets for purposes of this post, contest to win 1-day park-hopper passes and social media sharing. All opinions and experiences are mine. [THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED.]
Fear. It’ll get you. It gets me. Every time. The further into mom-mode I find myself, the bigger the fear grows. Especially when it comes to trying new things. Fear about what? Oh, feeling older. Getting boring. Looking tired. Doing something that’s going to injure myself in a way that will affect my kids. You know, the usual and unthinkable that comes with raising kids these days…
The ongoing mission to reignite carefree experiences from my youth is getting more… shall we say… frequent… on account of trying to resist all those irrational fears that sneak into moms’ brains, that is.
By now, you might know that Disneyland is my go-to happy place. With my husband and kids. With my parents. By myself. I’ve pretty much done it all — Space Mountain, California Screamin’, Snow White’s Scary Adventures in Fantasyland. Everything except The Twilight Zone™ Tower of Terror at Disney’s California Adventure.
No way. That thing is tall. That thing drops, like, a zillion feet. And you’re in what’s supposed to be an elevator. Free falling? Trapped? Out of control? For how long?!? I don’t care if a ton of people love it… no way. Let’s go to Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride instead.
But not this time. Oh no. This time, I faced my fears. Let’s just say Mickey inspired me to do it thanks to Tower of Terror’s ‘final check-out’ happening in the next few months. (I also mom-ed up on account of being there with a group of bloggers specifically gathered to experience the terror together… wussing out would’ve been downright embarrassing and unprofessional). And, it was my last chance…
That’s right kids, no more spooky and weird hotel Twilight Zone shenanigans after January 2, 2017! Guardians of the Galaxy will be taking over the Tower with a whole new look, feel and storyline… and yes, there will be a big drop. But still. Tower of Terror was going away and if I wanted to ever do it, this was my only opportunity left.
I walked into the Tower’s lobby with the group and looked around. Old furniture and cobwebs everywhere. A random doll that, I swear, glared at me. Creepy. (But good, right?)
And don’t get me started about the stairs we had to go up, up, up and the eerie airy elevator shafts. (I was very proud of busting out my camera and snapping this particular shot from the rail I was near so fast while waiting in line…)
Oh. And then came the elevator. We were supposed to get in that thing. “Welcome…” the voiceover echoed from somewhere. (What is it about a ‘freight’ elevator that makes it so… spooky?!)
My mom shoes stood on the number ‘2’ and waited my turn. My tummy flipped-flopped. I’ve never been on a ‘drop’ ride and I wasn’t quite sure I wanted to ever try one. But there I was. (This is a good sign. I have 2 kids….)
STUPID. IT’S A RIDE. AT DISNEYLAND. THE HAPPIEST PLACE ON EARTH. Take control.
What was I scared of? Stupid things. I don’t even know. Well, okay: I was scared of the free-fall thing. I was scared I’d be holding on the handlebars and konk my head on the side of the metal compartment we were sitting in. I was scared I’d get nauseas and feel like my head was going to explode because my body was no longer used to jarring rides like it once was. I was also scared of being in total darkness.
Oh yes. Did I mention? This ‘final check-out’ gimmick before the Tower closes in January is that you ride the ride in total darkness! Blackout!?!? No light in, no light out. True terror, if you ask me.
And oh yes, I was also worried I’d soon want to throw up that delicious frosted Maleficent Rice Krispie treat I’d just chomped on with my daughter before heading to the Tower to free-fall to my own demise.
Oh hell. I’ll just close my eyes and be done with it.
NONSENSE. GET ON THE RIDE AND MOM UP, LADY. F-A-B cannot turn into meaning ‘fear after babies…’
I stepped on. I sat down. I buckled myself in. I tightened that buckle again. I tucked my small purse under the buckle to make sure I didn’t lose it while dropping to my death. I grabbed the handles tight. The metal doors slammed shut with an echo. We went up. We stalled. We dropped down. We rode up some more. We dropped again. I screamed. I smiled. I hung on like mad. I laughed. I opened my eyes. I closed my eyes. I did not throw up. My head did not explode.
And, I opened my eyes. Face the fear.
I will say: There is a HUGE FABULOUS AMAZING REVEAL in this ride, that I had no idea existed before experiencing it. But you have to keep your eyes open. Bravery is sometimes rewarded with beauty, folks. At the highest levels and with the most spanning views. (That’s a major hint…)
That’s the funny thing about fear, isn’t it? Forging through your own fear, eyes open, sometimes reveals the most beautiful surprises.
Our freight elevator of terror finally settled and we unbuckled. My mom shoes stepped off and I scurried back to my kids. I was a different person. I was better. I cringed when I thought back to how nervous I was minutes before. Post Tower of Terror, I suddenly felt younger, more fun, happier and more alive. (Who knew I was such an easy thrill?) I’m so glad I did it. No fear. Especially not at Disneyland.
Thanks, Mickey. You know how to party like a mother alright.
Want to win tickets and experience the Tower of Terror yourself?
[THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED.]
To win four (4) free 1-day park-hopper tickets to Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure, leave a comment below about why you’d like to visit the park with your family. To conquer fear? To celebrate a milestone? To take three of your mom friends on an adventure and leave your kids with a sitter for once in your life? Tickets must be used at parks by November 1, 2016. Tickets do not include passes to Mickey’s Halloween Party (are for parks only). Contest open to anyone within continental United States. Entries must be received by Friday October 14, 2016, 11:59pmPT.
Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort is open through Oct. 31. Traditional Disneyland Halloween-themed attractions add to the spooky magic of the season with Haunted Mansion Holiday and Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy. For 17 special nights during the season, families can trick-or-treat in the ultimate neighborhood at Mickey’s Halloween Party. New thrills this year are the “Frightfully Fun Parade” and the appearance of the Headless Horseman at Mickey’s Halloween Party. HOWEVER, Mickey’s Halloween Party nights are completely sold out for this year. Mark their calendars for next July, when tickets are likely to go on sale for 2017. You may still join the fun online #HalloweenTime for Disneyland Resort Halloween posts and photos. Follow along on Twitter and Instagram @Disneyland.