Everything I Need to Know I Learned From Disney

I’m not gonna lie. Today sucked. We had our first IEP meeting at our local school after the fiasco when they lied, denied and sold their soul to the devil months before at the last IEP meeting. I’m thankful that our attorney was with us and ensured that everything that should’ve been addressed was noted.

As soon as we showed up, the staff that betrayed our trust to the utmost extent acted as if nothing ever happened. The pleasantries began. The district supervisor that was so nasty to the school in Tennessee sat with a sneer on her face next to their attorney. I sat in the chair across the table silently, jaws clenched, Sharpie in hand. My husband said he could tell I was fuming and that I was even writing “angrily.”

“How is Shane doing?” My husband answered them. “Oh! That’s great to hear.” Inside my head, I rolled my eyes and whispered to myself all the things I wanted to say. Do they know that their lack of honesty took years off our lives? Do they realize that their lack of integrity has cost us thousands of dollars we shouldn’t have had to spend? Do they know that their lack of morals is stealing pieces of time from our family we’ll never get back? Furthermore, do they care?

Anyone who knows me understands the colossal feat it took for me to sit with my mouth shut. I’m a fighter. A warrior. A Mama Bear. How did I accomplish this? Disney. Yes, Disney. During the meeting, I replayed pivotal scenes from Disney movies in my mind. Movies that taught me life’s lessons so eloquently that I hadn’t thought of for years.

Thumper-“If you can’t say somthin’ nice, don’t say nuthin’ at all.”

Scar looking in Mufasa’s eyes and indicating that he was going to help only to dig his claws in and let him fall

Pinnochio-“Always let your conscience be your guide.”

Aladdin-“You’re only a fool if you give up.”

Lady and the Tramp-“There’s a great big hunk of world down there with no fence around it.

Nemo-“Just keep swimming.

I know it’s a weird coping mechanism, but it’s one that worked for me today as my anxiety was through the roof. And, even as I sit here this evening, my heart breaks that the road we’re on is not one I would’ve chosen or ever envisioned, but it’s what has to be for now.

As we said our goodbyes to Shane after our visit Saturday, I handed him a little box. In it were two action figures, Frodo and Sam. But, more importantly, there was a dog tag necklace with a quote we repeat at the end of every phone call and one that I hope he never forgets…

“Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem and smarter than you think.”-Winnie the Pooh

Thanks, Disney, for giving me the wisdom, life lessons and the words to convey what my head is saying and my heart is feeling. And, for teaching me everything I need to know.

Hard work pays off.-Princess and the Frog

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