The Marathon of Travel

My kids have always been great travelers- but every time I fly I brace myself for something to happen, since children are so unpredictable.

Everything has always been fine, even when we had some outside drama, like the time the gate agent told me I couldn’t fly with my 16 month old lap child because she didn’t believe he was under 2 and I had no proof. I had flown with a folded up copy of my older son’s birth certificate since he was 2 months old, yet I was never asked to show it so I didn’t think to take one for my 2nd baby. Moral of the story? Always take some proof of your baby’s age if you’ll flying with him on your lap!

Everything worked out that trip- aside from my minor heart attack, as we assessed worst case scenario (drive back home, get birth certificate, take a later flight) but finally we called a supervisor over who confirmed my son was not yet two, by his lack of speech. Phew. Note to self, always carry copies of birth certificates.

Then there was our direct flight from Austin to NYC- what could go wrong? It was a direct! Well, due to some mysterious events, we were diverted to Baltimore for FIVE hours and they tried to make us stay on the plane the whole time. Since we had no food and I had a rambunctious 13 month old, they reluctantly let us off (due to the new FAA rules that I just so happened to know about) but in a last minute effort to try to get us to stay on the place, the flight attendant told me we might not be able to get back on the plane. We decided to take the chance.

All in all it was an 8 hour delay. We could have flown to Hawaii in the same amount of time we were on that flight. But my boys did so well!

I’m always exhausted after traveling, and my kids have not yet melted down on a flight, or thrown a tantrum at the airport. They are always shockingly on their best behavior, so I wonder how I would feel after traveling if they acted appropriately for their age.

On our most recent flight I was prepared for the running-a-marathon like feeling I usually have when a seemingly cosmic joke was played on me.

My almost 2 year old wanted nothing to do with me, would not sit in my lap, nurse upon takeoff, let me give him candy, nothing. As long as he was in his dad’s lap, he was happy.

Then another crazy event took place- my 4 year old fell asleep in the middle of the day on an airplane! This child cut out naps at 2, and does not randomly fall asleep ever. Not in a car, not on a plane, not while watching a movie, not while being read to, NEVER. What can I say? He loves life and does not want to miss out on a single thing. I like to compare him to Leonardo DaVinci, who pretty much never slept.

What was I to do- I had just downloaded “The Paris Wife” onto my Kindle, and had optimistically juiced it up before leaving home, never expecting to actually get to read it.

Well apparently I had two hours of time and space to myself, so I excitedly cracked open my Kindle and started reading.

That lasted about one second before my Kindle started flashing on and off, and then turned itself completely off and reset. This continued for 10 minutes and every time I found my place again and read one or two lines, the same thing would happen.

Seriously? Cosmic joke.

So I put that away, and decided to do the crossword in the airplane magazine. Alas I had no pen, and crayons do not write well in tiny squares on glossy magazine pages. Oh well, I couldn’t really even stretch my brain enough to access the trivia I have stored…

So there I was, with nothing to do but wonder if my new non-toxic deodorant was working. I wasn’t quite sure it was until I realized the plane was full of teenaged boys on a rowing team.

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