Hi my name is Marge and I’m a Disney Moms Panel Reject (crowd, in unison, “hi marge”). Yes, for the third year in a row I submitted my application to the Disney Moms Panel with the hopes that this would be “my year” to obtain one of the few, and very coveted, spots for the 2012 panel. And, yes, AGAIN, I was rejected. Rejection, in any form, is quite the blow to the ego (an ego I never knew I had until I started applying to the panel), but rejection from the “same” people year after year is beginning to wear away at my already fragile self confidence. I think the rejection is particularly wounding to me because I spend all day, everyday, with five little people who think I am the smartest, funniest, most beautiful and talented person to have ever walked the earth. So to be rejected by a group I SO want to be a part of in order to help others with something I am quite passionate about, is quite gut wrenching. What makes things even more difficult for my problem-solving personality, is that, since you do not KNOW why you were rejected, it is impossible to improve or change for next year.
So what fueled my delusion that this was to be “the year”? Actually a number of things..first, this year the Moms Panel was looking for an actual runDisney Mom! I was so excited..oh to be picked to talk, not only about Disney, but about running AT Disney….it was like the panel was shouting “Marge! Marge!” Since becoming a runner 3 years ago, I have run four Disney sponsored events. Not too bad for someone who lives far far away from WDW.
My second “sign” was that this fall’s trip was my 20th visit to WDW. My first trip was in 1985, when I was 9. Since then, I returned 19 more times, spanning throughout various life stages; child, teen, single young adult, married sans kids, married with kids, newly pregnant, VERY VERY pregnant, with a newborn, infant, toddler (terrible 2’s!!), and now, this past trip with our five children, ages 11,7,6,3, and 4 months. I have stayed both on site and off and am also a member of DVC. With 20 trips under my belt, I figured I HAD to be just as knowledgeable as anyone.
My third sign was the Moms Panel Meet held on October 1. It just so happened that it took place during our vacation AND we had been selected to attend. It just seemed all too coincidental. Not that I thought I had it wrapped up or anything, but I felt like I had an actual chance this year. And after attending the Moms Meet and meeting those panelists who attended, it made me want to be a part of that “family” even more!
But, alas, it wasn’t meant to be, as I sadly discovered upon seeing the email in my inbox on Saturday titled “Thank you….” . I didn’t even read it for a few days…I didn’t have to. I am all too familiar with the rejection email, so just by reading the email subject line I knew that my hopes to become a Moms Panelist were once again over.
So after five days of wallowing in self pity, questioning my qualifications to the point of obsession, I decided that perhaps I am not meant to be on the Moms panel……
Yesterday, I uploaded all of our WDW vacation photos from our trip two weeks ago. I love doing that, it’s like reliving the whole vacation again….minus the fatigue and occasional cranky child. As I sat there looking at all of our photos, pictures of our family having a great time, our Family 5k photos, pictures I took at the Moms Panel Meet, I realized that my bruised ego had gotten the better of me. Those delighted little faces looking back at me through those photos are there because of my planning, knowledge, and expertise. So, maybe I didn’t make it this year, but I am not ready to throw in the towel just yet. Maybe I don’t know how to “fix” my “200” words so that my knowledge and personality shine in next year’s but….what I DO know…is that my love for all things Disney will not fade nor will my excitement and desire to help maximize the Disney experience for others. So maybe this wasn’t my year….but there is always next year, and in the mean time, I will be gaining a whole year’s worth of knowledge and experiences and perhaps another runDisney event or two under my belt….and above all else…I’ll be gaining precious memories through these experiences with those that I love the most.