The Happiest Place on Earth



As my college friends and I hit our forties, an alarming theme has surfaced. Spouses leaving, many times for a younger model. My friends,  who have beeen married almost a century, suddenly lose their spouse without a warning, as if taken in a car accident, or by a stranger, or a sudden violent act of nature. But why? Why would somebody with a loving spouse and children living in suburbian utopia get up one day and leave? What kind of inner turmoil and conflict goes on inside somebody’s head that leads them to walk away from what they spent close to a century building?

I watch them on social media, taking selfies with their new improved companion models in exotic locations. I also watch my friends who are left behind, struggling to stay above the waterline, to find new jobs, new identities, new meaning in the face of their loss.

I wanted to explore the idea of meaning, happiness, value in life and the lengths people will go to in order to feel alive, even if it means destroying everything and everybody around them in order to attain it. I couldn’t think of  a better place for this to play out than Disney World, where protecting “the magic” from being spoiled translates into millions of dollars every year.

I am a big fan of Flannery O’Connor, and I won’t deny that the ending wasn’t inspired by Enoch in “Wiseblood.”

I put together this 60 second video, reading some of it. Hope you enjoy it. Please select highest HD when viewing.

About Heidi Stauff

Ultimately ending up in Atlanta, Heidi's creative impulses followed many paths. She delivered middle-class, white-girl, angst to tens and twenties of Generation-Xers through the now defunct rock-band, Belljar. She designed hundreds of dresses for Disney-bound little girls. She birthed two babies she now homeschools, lost and then found her faith again, and writes about all of it in her free time: which is usually after midnight with a glass or three of wine.
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