Cut to going to SeaWorld with family friends who were visiting Southern California back in June, and being told I couldn't ride the roller coaster because the harness wouldn't lower enough. I was embarrassed in a way you will never in your life understand unless this very thing has happened to you. My weight and lack of control over it, slapped me hard in the face as I stood at the exit waiting for the friends who were riding the coaster. Humiliating doesn't begin to cover it. We were already planning our trip to Disneyland and I wanted to go home and cancel it that night. All I could think was "I'm too fat for Disneyland!"
I was assured there would be things to do other than ride the rides, and sure- there is tons to do in Disneyland beside the rides, but I wanted to enjoy my time at the happiest place on earth and enjoy the rides! I scoured the website looking for information about "riders of size" to see if there were warnings (like there were for SeaWorld that I so foolishly ignored in my denial). I couldn't find anything!
My next step was to tweet Disneyland and ask them if there was anywhere I could find information. That was embarrassing to type out! They tweeted me back to ask the "cast member" at every ride I was interested in. Reading that tweet, I think I had a panic attack! I was supposed to walk up to strangers, repeatedly, over the course of our three-day hopper pass, my head hung in shame, and ask them if they thought I would fit on the ride they were working on?
I figured when it came time to ride the rides I would look for how they secured you: was it a harness, a lap belt, or one of those lap bars? If it was a harness, I would just pass. If it was a lap bar, I would probably do the same!
Our first day at the parks, we had early entry into California Adventure! The first ride we saw was Mater's Junkyard Jamboree- it's like the teacups, but you're being towed in a cart, and the cart is fish tailing back and forth behind Mater. The park was pretty empty, so I nervously asked the gal at the entry to the ride if there was a weight limit, and if she thought I would fit. She looked at me like I just asked if I could eat her ear for breakfast. She assured me I would be ok, and I was.
Next was the Radiator Springs Racers! We stood there trying to see the cars whiz by to see how people were secured. We just couldn't get a good enough view. There were about 6 cast members standing at the entry to the ride and I knew I would have to ask one of them, but they were mostly fit guys. Great. Fatty would have to ask about fitting on a ride from a male who was in shape. I almost cried at the thought of it! So I nervously walked over and asked on of the guys who was super compassionate in assuring me I would fit. He then said "I've put two of Snoop Dogg's bodyguards on this ride, and they're about as wide as you and me put together- they're big boys! It was tight, but they fit- you'll be fine!"
We waited in line, I nervously approached the ride, I got into the back seat of the car, and... I fit.
Soon enough we came across an information stand and I figured instead of embarrassingly asking at every ride, I would just ask there if there were any rides throughout the parks he thought might be an issue for me. He was the kindest person, and assured me if there was a ride I wanted to go on, it would accommodate me. There were a few rides I still asked if there was a weight limit on (like Flick's Flyers and the next day before riding Dumbo the Flying Elephant), and every single time I was assured I'd be ok.
Jumpin' Jellyfish in California Adventure. I asked the cast member at the entrance if she thought I would be ok, she assured me I would be, but looking at it, it looked like it was going to be a TIGHT fit, so I skipped it.
I'm taking my SeaWorld and Disneyland experiences as motivation to live a healthier life and really focus on my journey without letting life sidetrack me. By the time I head to Disneyland Tokyo, I want my weight to be the last thing on my mind. I wanted to write about this first and foremost in my Disneyland recaps though, because it is the time for travel and vacations, and if you are out there and nervous about your own weight- take it from me, you'll be ok!
If you want to ask me anything about this trip and post, and don't want to in the comments, please feel free to drop me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org! If you do leave a question in the comments please make sure I can reply to you via e-mail, or leave your e-mail for me to get back with you! If you are headed to Disneyland, enjoy your magical time there!