TRIGGER WARNING-SEXUAL ABUSE, RAPE: When I was 8 years old I would be afraid to go to sleep because my dad would come into my room in the middle of the night and touch me. He always threatened me not to tell so I didn’t. I would hope and dream that Peter Pan would come in my room and take me to Neverland so that I would never have to sleep again. I have dreams about Peter Pan almost every night now, and I’ve never
been afraid since.
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I’m entering a talent show despite not being a fantastic singer. I’ve chosen to sing “I’ll Try” from the Return to Neverland soundtrack for my performance. It’s such a powerful song for me, because my ex loves Peter Pan and I know he’ll be in the audience. Funny enough, I hate Peter and all he stands for. The “never grow up” mentality and not taking anything seriously. The song hits a little too close to home for me, so hopefully the emotion will show through even if I can’t belt.
I met my husband because we both work at Disneyland and we are now expecting a baby. My whole life has been hoping for that Disney happy ending and I actually got to have it. Our favorite movie is Peter Pan and we go to meet him and Wendy as often as possible because they made our dreams come true. Disney magic IS real, whatever age you are, wherever you may come from.
My Disney dream since I was a kid is to buy all of the books Disney characters’ stories were based upon and get them to sign them. I would love to have a copy Peter Pan signed by Peter and Wendy themselves and Alice in Wonderland signed by Alice. My family never liked meeting characters but this is a dream I hold steadfastly onto.
Being Native, I hate Peter Pan (feeling about Pocahontas requires an essay) because of the rampant racism. Because I still love the idea of Peter and Neverland, I mitigate the discomfort with listening to Frank Waln’s “What Makes The Red Man Red” rap and watching Peter Pan 2 which has no Natives in it. The indignant and offended faces people make when I say I like Peter Pan 2 much more than 1 really bugs me, but the ashamed look at the ground when I explain “the sequel is plenty fun and has good moments, but mainly I love it because it isn’t racist and doesn’t make fun of my ethnicity” does help me feel better in an angry-at-the-world kind of way. Relistening to Frank Waln helps much more, though.
When I was little I would often dream of going to Neverland with Peter Pan. I was horribly bullied because of my autism and my parents were really strict because of my behavior. As a result I just wanted to fly to Neverland and stay there forever as a kid. I would often stay awake to see if my wish would come true. It never did, but Peter still gave me hope that things would get better.
Peter Pan was always my happy place. For years I was obsessed with escaping my family and my situation and wanted to fly off with Peter Pan. I guess I’ve never let go of that mentality.
Over the summer, my parents surprised me with a Disney Cruise that really changed my life. I met my best friend on the cruise but it turns out that she lives far away. We have FaceTimed for months and months and have become very close, even though it was through a screen. Her sister was touring colleges and wanted to tour one by where I lived and my bestie came up! Yesterday I saw her for the first time since the cruise and I love her so much and never wanted her to leave. I hope to see her again soon and always think of her whenever I watch anything Peter Pan.