More pics from the lobby...
One we arrived at the airport, we had to wait around forty minutes or so for United to get the aisle wheelchair for Dear Son. Another couple had to wait for one as well for their disabled child. United needs a better policy so they can deliver the aisle wheelchairs in a reasonable amount of time. Disabled people shouldn't have to wait until everyone has left the plane and the new staff arriving before getting them a wheelchair. When tickets are ordered, there should be a box on-line for you to check so that they can have the chair available. One of the flight attendants for the next flight recognized Dear Son from our trip to Orlando and decided to give him some "wings". She pinned the wings on his t-shirt. He seemed to enjoy it.From there, it was onto Windy City Limousines. They have executive busses that are handicapped accessible. We were the only passengers both times. The bus was only a week or so old.
Arriving home (O.K. I might have used the departure photo when we left, lol!) Overall, a really great trip. We couldn't have picked a better place for Dear Son's trip. When I asked for suggestions, most of you suggested Give Kids the World at Disney and you were right on the mark. It was so easy for us. Everything was totally accessible. Give Kids went out of their way to do everything they could to make it easy. They set up the TSA at the airport. At Disney, everything we did was accessible and easy. The passes allowed us to go on rides without any wait times. This was especially great for Dear Son since he didn't have a lot of energy and often was exhausted after a few hours. Our wheelchair van was like icing on the cake. It took our trip to a whole different level in terms of making it easier. It wasn't just easy getting around but having the van meant we could leave when it was best for Dear Son and come home when he needed to leave. I know it was certainly Dad's favorite thing since he didn't have to do any lifting. Dear Son is getting to be a pretty big guy at 180 pounds to lift into the car.
In the end, we had a great trip and a lot of great memories. Next month, when he goes to summer school, I make a scrapbook of the trip. In the meantime, it helps to pass the time thinking about the good times. Give Kids the World has a policy where any time you are in the area, you can come and spend the day there (providing you have other accomodations). I told Dear Son we might go back next year to visit and he just smiles. It's nice having something to look forward to.
In hindsight, I think this trip would have been more enjoyable for him two years ago, when he could do more and wasn't so exhausted. I say that because if you have a child and have the opportunity to take a trip like this, you should do it while they are well enough to enjoy it. I mentioned this to a friend of mine and she thought that it was the perfect time for Dear Son since this is when he seemed to need it most. After thinking about it some more, I think she is exactly right. Sometimes, we need all need a vacation just to get away and think about something different. In Dear Son's case, I think our timing was perfect. He seems so much happier now and although he's still tired, I can always get a smile by showing him Mickey Mouse, showing him pictures or just plain talking about our trip. And after everything he's been through, I am thrilled he has some great memories.