07 March 2013

there and back

Our first plane trip (OY), came and went and while nowhere near a complete disaster travel-wise, I confess it is *really hard* to travel with a little one.
The hardest part is actually embarrassing to admit. The hardest part is worrying about what everyone else is thinking.

Traveling with Della is just that: traveling with Della.
There are moments where she is happy. Moments when she is unhappy.  Moments.  Strings of moments.

But the issues come from worrying, and being aware of all of those other people trapped in the plane with you who are looking at your sweet baby as a (*insert any scary could go off at any moment inappropriate-to-mention bad thing here*), and all of a sudden, travel is HARD.

And stressful.

But. Here we are. There and back.
The there was intense and good and I am so very glad we took the time, right now, to go.
The coming back here was intense in that reentry is always challenging, loads of laundry, empty fridge, desperate cat, work piled up, emails overflowing, shoulds shouldding around (should should should).
Bone tired with my voice nearly gone with a new bug that has me coughing and snotty and headachy. But the coming back was also ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
complete with snowflakes.

I've had to just stop. Breathe.  Go through email. Prioritize. Launder. Shop. Settle. Blow nose. Let the fact that time passes too quickly be just that, a fact. A fact I cannot change. Whoosh and the day is over, the to do list still overflowing. And so it goes.  That is what tomorrows are for.


Anonymous said...

I've traveled a lot with Gwen in the last 16 months, and what I've come to realize is that no one will ever be as bothered by Gwen's behavior as I am -- not even my husband.

People in general are really tolerant of kids, especially if they are parents themselves; and if they aren't, then they're either generally tolerant or generally intolerant, and your child's behavior (unless it's really beyond the pale) is probably not going to matter in how they feel towards her.

I had two experiences that really drove this home -- the first was when she was about 4 months old and we were on the ferry from Hook van Holland to Harwich (about 10 hours), and there was another family there with their 11 month old. While every time Gwen squeaked or gurgled I was instantly tense, worried that we were bothering the people sitting nearby, I'd occasionally hear the other baby fuss, and my reaction always was "Eh, baby. They do that", and filter it out. And then I realized that other people were probably doing the same regarding my baby, and the other couple was probably sitting there saying to themselves "oh, god, our child is being so annoying and disruptive all the other passengers must hate us!"

The other time was when Gwen was almost 13 months. We were on the way to the airport (about 1.5 hours by train), for a late flight to Paris from which we had an overnight to Cape Town. The train ride perfectly corresponded with both supper time and bed time for Gwen, and with rush hour commuter traffic, so we ended up spending part of the trip walking up and down the stairs in one of the car entries, which was relatively full of standing passengers and their luggage also headed to the airport, and she was tired and fussy and whiny. I overheard two business men talking to each other quietly, and one of them said almost exactly the same thing I'd thought to myself on the ferry, about how he is always in agonies about his kids' behavior when they're traveling, but finds it quite easy to simply ignore other people's kids. It was very reassuring.

Kate said...

Thank you so much S! It feels so shitty to admit when the uncomfortable things are my own creation. I really appreciate you sharing your own experiences and perspective. It makes me feel less crazy, and more hopeful!