/ Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

I’ve decided my life is becoming entirely too full of “do you remember where you were when….” moments.  Growing up, I recall how my mom would talk about remembering where she was when she heard President Kennedy had been shot.  That’s it.  THAT was the extent of her “I remember where I was when…..” stories.  I remember being awed and scared by the thought of living through something so horrific, never imagining what the future could possibly have in store.

Now, as the heartbreaking headlines and images pour out of Boston, I am left to ponder my list of where I was when….. The Columbia. Oklahoma City. Columbine. New York City. Washington, DC. Katrina. The Challenger. Newtown. And now Boston.  And given that this is a partial list, I am scared to imagine what my children’s list may be.

I know this is a Disney blog, and our intent is to share our love of Disney, so I promise there is a connection in my thoughts.  What struck me today as I stared, aghast, at my Facebook feed was how my thoughts immediately jumped to my WDW Radio family:  Happy.  Deanna.  Joe.  Val and Steve.  Bea.  Beckerman. Lori.  Katie.  The WDW Radio Running Team.  How were they?  Were they okay?  Were any of them there?  How are they handling things?  Angie!  Angie is in Massachusetts!  Is she alright?

I scrolled frantically through my Facebook feed, and like a reassuring hug, I saw all my family, reacting in a way similar to myself, all posting their despair and their anger and their confusion…  Laura’s prayers.  Kathy’s inspirational quote.  Emma’s kindness from across the Atlantic.  Lisa’s post of the President’s speech.  Chuck’s appeal to wear a running medal to work.  John’s reminder to do what we love, because life is too short to spend it being unhappy.  Liz announcing she will wear a running team shirt to work.  I read them all.  I felt scared and sad… and then, all at once, I felt… comforted.  In the midst of my thoughts about how to explain yet another tragedy to my growing-all-too-fast-children, there was my WDW Radio family (most of whom I have never met in person), bringing me peace amid shared grief.

Mind you, the peace was not an “everything is going to be all right” kind of feeling.  It was a “I share my pain with others” emotion.  It was the knowledge that we are horrified by events hundreds of miles away, happening to people we do not know; that we share the desire to cry for our country; that we are confused… In short, I was comforted that I am not alone in my feelings of hopelessnes, frustration, and “I’ve had enough of this.”

I am so proud to be part of this community.  Because when it comes down to it, we are brought together by so much more than a shared love for a theme park… or a mouse…. or even a podcast.  We are the WDW Radio family because we have a shared commitment to believing that good will outweigh evil… and that the power of faith and dreams always outweighs madness.  We know that kindness, compassion, and humility are cornerstones of a family, and we show that in our actions.   And, of course, we believe in the power of a hug. We prove these values through the generosity of the Dream Team and the size of the mighty WDW Radio Running team. And I am certain this team will continue to demonstrate its belief in good come January, when the Blue Wave runs to benefit others, despite the sad few who want us to live in fear.

I love this family of mine… and I thank you all for helping me cope with another in a tragically long list of sad days for our country.   I know I speak for us all when I say that I look forward to the day when our “remember where you were when’s” do not involve sadness or pain, but rather refer to healing and hope.





14 thoughts on “The Power of Family in a Time of Sadness”

  1. Diane Jones says:

    Well said, Lou. You expressed so well what many of us are feeling. Some day there will be an end to all evil, and sorrow, and tears. And until then we will continue to live, and hope, and love.

  2. Jenn says:

    Beautifully said, Christy. I need to add the Chicago flood to that list “where was I…” Moments. We also must remember those people who were affected by the horrible storms on the east coast and the Midwest.

    This has been a rough time for us as a nation, but I believe that these times being out the best in people and draw people together in ways we could never imagine.

    I am so happy to know that our WDW family has all managed to come through this latest incident without a loss. May the times ahead be blessed and better than the ones we have to look back on.

    Jennifer (JennDisneyGeek)

  3. WDW Donna says:

    After visiting Boston with my family a couple of years ago it has become one of our favourite places to visit. My first fear was of our WDWRadio family that are marathon runners and might be there. I am glad everyone within WDWRadio is safe but also feel sad for those who were victims. God bless.

  4. DisneyDaddy says:


    your post hits close to home today as we also pause to remember the 6th anniversary of the horrible Virginia Tech shooting – April 16, 2007. Sadly, I have to add the “I was there” sticker for that event as I was activated by the Va. Dept. of Emergency Management to work in the joint information center for about 3 days. I would never wish that kind of anguish and chaos on anyone.

    What keeps us all going is our love for our families and our friendships near and far. I am proud to be associated with this Disney family and I know that we will continue to support each other as much as we can and hope and pray that this will be the last tragedy, yet knowing it won’t be.

  5. "Coach" Happy Keller says:

    Nice article, Christy! Your post brings back some Boston Marathon memories…

    All I could see, when first seeing the horrible scene yesterday, was the wall-sized photo of my wife Pattie running with her arms up in the air in joy as she approached the Finish Line with the flags of different countries waving in the background not 50 yards from where one of the bombs went off yesterday. I’m so glad that smile won’t ever change…

    For me, personally, I remember turning the corner to run up Boylston St. to the Finish Line only a few weeks after surgery, and less than a week after being cleared to “exercise”. My memory, at least for the time being, has been tainted by what happened yesterday. I hope that feeling will fade…

    I am so angry and sad right now. Hug your families. Hug your pets. Hug yourself. And pray for those who were killed or injured yesterday by this coward(s).


    Happy Keller
    WDW Radio Running Team Coach

  6. Disney_Love says:

    Well said

  7. Agreed, nicely said.

  8. sheila says:

    very well put. I really try to look at all the good that everyone does to help others after these terrible things happen. The GOOD truly does out weigh the bad.

    It’s nice to come to a site like wdw to just think happy thoughts.

    Thanks for your beautiful words.

  9. Steamboat Eddie says:

    Love this post Christy. Good will always outweigh evil, ALWAYS. Here’s to more of the good “remembering where you were when’s”.

    Steamboat Eddie

    “You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.”
    Mahatma Gandhi

  10. Beatrice Feeney says:

    Thank you for sharing those sentiments so beautifully. I was looking at Facebook to make sure the people I know & their families were ok also. I was so sad, but started feeling those virtual hugs from my friends, as Lou says “whether we have met yet, or not.” We do have a very extraordinary “family” here and I am so thankful that we get through every happy and sad moment together: whether playing like we’re 5 years old again in the parks; cheering each other on; picking each other up when we need a helping hand; laughing together; or seeing you all on the anniversary celebration & trying not to cry because your hugs meant more than words could express with all I went through that week (sorry, that one was personal)…I’m just so thankful that whatever we go through, I have you all, our Box Family, virtually by my side.

  11. CriesDuringWishes says:

    Heros always triumph over Villains….
    Thanks for this beautiful post. Hugs are powerful indeed.

  12. Linda Raymond says:

    Thank you Christy,,,

    I really can not add anything more to your beautiful words,,except to say, that I too believ GOOD will out do evil,,,,my prayers go out to all the families,,and I too am so happy all our WDW RADIO runners are safe. Please everyone hug your loved ones a bit tighter today,,,

  13. Donna Milligan says:


    You wrote so eloquently what all of us are feeling. The horror and sadness and bewilderment. Why and how and who can be so filled with hatred that he would do something so horrific against his fellow man? But, the WDW Radio Running Team will not let him instill fear in our hearts. We will continue to run and to run for a good and worthwhile cause-the Dream Team Project benefitting the Make-a-Wish Foundation! I’ll be there in January for WDW Marathon weekend and I’ll look forward to seeing all of my teammates there too!

  14. Becky Manion says:

    Wrote so nicely Christy, almost bought tears to my eyes at work!

    Would like to meet you on a future trip, as Im sure others do too!