Posted in Autism, Disney Parks, Special Needs

“Mummy, Give Me a Kiss”


My son is primarily non-verbal. It is difficult engaging him in any conversation. He does not like to be touched or hugged.

Andrew is fifteen with a developmental age of three. He loves the movie Toy Story and the Disney characters Buzz Lightyear and Woody. It is for that reason we love Disney’s Hollywood Studios’  attraction ‘Toy Story Midway Mania!’.

Every time we vacation at any of the Disney Parks we see great social and developmental improvements. Andrew comes into his own and into our world many times during those vacations. That is what keeps us coming back time and time again, coupled with Cast Members anticipating our needs, makes for a positive and memorable experience.

One visit to Toy Story Mania stands out in my mind, Andrew was thirteen at the time and up until then I had never heard any terms of endearment or had any hugs from him.

While in the attraction vehicle, Andrew’s aim at the targets was incredible, he was pointing and shooting at all the targets on the screens, breaking them one after the other and becoming increasingly engaged by the minute.

Andrew that day scored 89,000 points, a personal best!

What a huge stride Andrew took that day, it was massive and I was so excited.

Upon exiting the attraction, Andrew turned to me and said, “Mummy, I love you, give me a kiss!”

I was floored! Not only did I give him a kiss, but I got a great big hug out of him for the first time in his thirteen years. For the very first time!

Imagine my delight. It’s a moment I will never ever forget and will hold close to my heart always.

Andrew came back to us if even for a few minutes. I have not heard those words from Andrew since, nor can I predict what he will say or do in the future. I am going to hold on to that special moment for the rest of my life and it’s all because of incredible, unforgettable moments while vacationing at Walt Disney World Resort!

I am so grateful for that special, special moment.

Andrew Toy Story Mania


Greetings! My past contributions to the Disney Parks Moms Panel (2016/17) gave me great joy by having assisted exactly 1,700 future and return Guests in planning their magical vacations. I am a former instrumental music teacher, full-time mom of two older children- a daughter studying medicine, and an autistic son in the phases of adult transitions. Art history, reading, and enjoying travel are all hobbies that keep me happy and distract me a little from the daily challenges of being a full-time caregiver. Thank you for checking in, and for taking the time to read my posts.

9 thoughts on ““Mummy, Give Me a Kiss”

  1. I am in tears reading this. As am Mom of a special needs son I know this moments are almost too important too precious to put into words. How magical!!

  2. Jackie, your stories about Andrew always leave me feeling a mixture of happiness and sadness, but the tears I shed today were of complete joy. I can not imagine never being hugged by my kiddos and I am grateful that they do, and can. Your heart must be so full every time you recall this special day. Thanks for sharing it with us. ❤

    1. Suzanne, thank you kindly for reading my post and taking the time to respond. It’s difficult not getting the odd hug once in a while but I have come to understand and realize that Andrew truly doesn’t mean it. I do see flickers of love from his eyes periodically and I grasp and hold on to those moments. The love is in there, it’s just trying to get out.

  3. Jackie, thank you for sharing your story with us today. Like MapleMouseMama said, I can only imagine that the lack of physical contact with your son must be very sad, so I can only imagine the complete joy that you felt that day. I’m sure that the tears in my eyes this day is the pollen…well, maybe not. 🙂 Thank you for sharing your wonderful post with us.

    Mike Ellis

  4. Hi Jackie! You are so wonderful and positive, and it’s so generous of you to share your story in the hopes of helping others. I’m looking forward to the day you visit Disneyland! – Eileen

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