I'm Scared To Fly With My Kid
Dear Mouthy Housewives,
I have to fly with my 15-month-old son next month. I'm terrified. Any advice on how to make it easier? I'm guessing it's not cool to drink while taking care of a baby on a plane.
Fear of Flying with Offspring
Dear Fear of Flying,
It really is stunning to me that not one airline has offered to check babies and toddlers at the gate. It would be so much more civilized. You give them your baby and they give you a claim ticket. They could run some kind of childcare facility in the underbelly of the plane while parents enjoy some peace and quiet up top. Unfortunately, airlines are too busy charging for headsets to think of this genius opportunity that would clearly put them ahead of the competition.
So you are sadly on your own. If you can afford it, absolutely buy your kid a seat. This enables you to use one of those Sit N Stroll things that transitions from a stroller to a car seat. Once you are on the plane, strap him into the car seat. If you can't afford an extra seat, you'll just have to do your best to keep him on your lap. Once you've reached the cruising altitude, you can walk the aisle endlessly and meet all the new people on the plane. What a wonderful networking opportunity!
I would also advise a bag full of goodies... like lollipops, treats and little toys. But be warned - I once gave my baby two bottles of formula to try to get her to sleep on a flight and she threw up all over the guy next to me. He smelled so bad, I wanted to switch seats.
Also, if possible, don't book a flight during your child's nap time. A well rested baby is always happier than a tired one and there is no guarantee your son will sleep on the plane. Finally, it never hurts to bring a few gifts for the passengers around you. Because if your son screams for two hours straight, passing out some free gum could at least prevent them from swearing at you.
And yes, it's perfectly acceptable to have one cocktail when you are caring for a child on a plane. In fact, it really should be required.
Photo Credit: dougww.