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OMG! Babies On a Plane!

Why you need to let your baby travel anxiety go

Posted by Kristi Gilbert

 

I've been that mom. The one who brought her adorable 3-month-old son on a plane for a scheduled 1-hour flight during the Christmas holidays. At the time, I was in freaked-out-mom mode - before we even got on the plane.

Will he cry non-stop? Oh god, I don't think I can handle the stares. I'll just have my husband hold him. No, but want to hold him! He's gonna bawl AAAAAACCCKK! I can't stand this pressure!!!

And then we got on the plane.  My son cooed for 15 minutes and then promptly passed out after his bottle.

When we got off the plane, people in the seats around us threw out their compliments. 

You have a baby? I never even heard him!

What a doll. Not a peep.

He's such a sweetie! You must be great parents!

Wait. What??

Because our precious bundle of love let out not a peep, we were considered great parents
How so completely unfair. After feeling all the worry or anxiety of people judging me, I was now pissed.

Secretly, I was incredibly proud, but that doesn't take away the unfairness of what that passenger said. A great parent should be judged based on so many factors. You, crazy lady who sang along with your music while headphoned think I'm a great parent because my kid was quiet That's your deductive reasoning. And frankly, that's crap.

I'll admit that I was worried about what others thought when we planned this trip, packed for this trip, paced in the terminal and got on the plane. However, I think it royally sucks that because your flight wasn't ruined by my bawling screaming infant, I must be mother of the year.

So I guess in this lady's eyes, parents or guardians of infants who scream bloody murder the entire flight, spit up-throw up- or "something else" are revolting awful caregivers and should have their children removed from them right away.
Of course

Granted the flight was just over an hour... Granted it was one child and not 2 or 3 and granted.

But I speak for all parents out there...

Any of you who had an experience that was less than pleasant because your infant was not happy during a flight. Because they cried and cooed and make loud noises causing eyes to stare and maybe impatiently roll around you. 

Any of you who's baby stunk up the cabin in a diaper filled with last night's yummies, who's precious child was not destined for air travel and made it very aware all  over dad's button down or mommy's purse...

Any of you have felt pressure based on news articles that have interviewed people that has complained.

I just read this article on CNN  that says: "..it's the parents responsbility to not make the other passengers uncomfortable.." and then proceeds to give tips on how to make that happen....

From CNN:

Tips for parents with babies

• If a baby reacts to the changing cabin pressure, give it something to suck on -- a bottle or a pacifier, for example -- when the plane is taking off or making its initial descent..

• If you can afford it, always buy a seat for your infant, instead of holding the baby on your lap.  It's safer, and you'll have more room to maneuver.

• Beware of trying to sedate a baby with over-the-counter children's medications. "People will try things to make babies sleep, like Benadryl or decongestants to help with the ears. In general, those medicines aren't recommended for kids under 2 years old," says the CNN spokesperson

• Be prepared. Bring everything you need to keep a baby content, including toys and changes of clothing, and be ready to rock your child or walk around the plane with them if they cry.

• Always make an effort to quiet a crying baby. "If other people see you trying, even if you're not succeeding, they will feel at least you're ... doing your best to stop it. And they'll have some sympathy for you, says CNN spokesperson.

Despite this article and so many others like it, I have news for you.

You are great parents. 

You are great parents because right now your job is to care for that child. Comfort them, keep them safe, feed them, care for them. Your number one goal is to make them feel loved and wanted. 

What your job isn't: Making sure your child is quiet enough so that the guy behind you can hear his music. Making sure your child is completely odor-free because passenger 4-B has a sensitive nose. Making sure that everyone around you has a pleasant flight. Nope, not your job.

So stop feeling anxious. Let go of that right now. No matter how long the flight. No matter how loud your daughter screams from the pressure on her ears. No matter how badly your son gets sick from the turbulence. It doesn't matter.

You are a parent first. Let the stewards worry about the judgments. 

 

 

 

 
 
 

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