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kill me now

August 11, 2008

Those three words best sum up our airplane experiences last week. 4 flights. 8 1/2 hours. 1 Dad. 1 Mom. 2 excited-as-can-be young boys. 1 toddler. 4 seats. No windows.

Okay that is not completely true. During two out of the four flights we had a normal window arrangements. But apparently the back row of smaller airplanes doesn’t have windows because the engines are glued to the side of that part of the plane. So, for those two flights it was dark and LOUD. I’m sure that only served to upset the toddler even more than he was already. And it really helped to make me feel even more like someones dog in the cargo hold as opposed to a normal non-first class passenger.

The little one, well, lets just say that for those eight hours I became his worst enemy. I thought I was so well prepared. I brought plenty of snacks, his blanket, a bottle, his favorite toys, and a dozen books. But it was all for naught, because apparently he doesn’t like to be told that he has to sit in one spot. I think a seat of his own would have been much better. There is something final about a seat belt. Not so with my lap. He hit me. He threw toys at me. Every attempt I made to soothe him just made him scream louder. Every snack or bottle I offered was immediately thrown to the floor. The flight attendants kept offering suggestions.  Other passengers were offering me their snacks. No thanks. I have plenty. He doesn’t want them.

It is a good thing airline security is pretty tight these days. If there were any weapons on that plane, someone would have killed me. Or maybe I would have.

I think that world powers should abandon all previously used methods of torture. Strap the world’s most notorious bad guy in a dark, noisy airplane seat with my child for 10 minutes and you will get whatever you want out of him. I promise.

Okay, I’ll touch on the highlights. The first flight was relatively uneventful. He kicked and screamed for the first 90 minutes, slept for 45 minutes, then screamed while we landed. But during the second flight, since he had just had a nice power nap, things were much different. Our seats were arranged across one aisle with my middle son next to one window, me in the middle, a nice lady with an iPod Touch in the aisle seat, someone I don’t know in the opposite aisle, my husband in the other middle, and my oldest in the other window seat. The iPod lady told me she had 4 or 5 kids. I was relieved to be sitting next to her instead of some crotchety old man who spent his whole life avoiding children. But still, I felt sorry for her, that in her one and only child-free ride on an airplane she had to sit next to me and the devil. She said she didn’t mind, but I know she really did because at one point in the screaming she interrupted her podcast to let him play with the iPod. A $300 bubble-popping game. 10 minutes of peace. Goodbye iPod. Goodbye peace.

From across the aisle, my husband could see me struggling, and my poor middle son being kicked to death by his little brother, so he ordered some different snacks. $10 worth of cheese and crackers and M&M’s. Noble in intent. But as I was struggling to open the M&Ms before the little one threw the bag across the plane, they jerked open in the way it happens in the movies and half the rainbow of candies went into the air and then directly down my shirt. Of course the child on my lap saw all this and spent the next 15 minutes trying to rip my shirt off to get to the goodies. Shortly after that, while I’m trying to juggle snacks and beverage service, he grabbed his brother’s Sierra Mist. We were all soaked. Particularly his poor brother.

I don’t remember much about flight three. I know there was more screaming and a little more sleeping. Flight four was very much like flight two, only I didn’t bother with snacks or books or toys. What is the point? So they can all end up on the floor? No, this time the only thing I tried was ice water. I thought I could let him sip the water and entertain him for a while. I guess sipping wasn’t really what he had in mind. And mommy holding the cup wasn’t part of the deal either. He promptly jerked the cup from my hands and dumped it down my shirt.

If I ever travel on a plane with this child again, I am going to pay for the extra seat. I will strap him down good and secure, down a few tranquilizers, and don a t-shirt that says “I AM SO SORRY” .

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Debby Morton permalink
    August 11, 2008 3:50 pm

    Oh Kendra, I really feel for you. I have been on flights where children are just not having a fun time and it is very hard for the parents. The way you express it all on your blog is humorous though I must say and I am sure that you will have some stories to be able to tell your little one when he gets older. At least you all made it back home in one piece and that is a good thing. Have a great week.

  2. Eric permalink
    August 11, 2008 4:00 pm

    Wow, its almost as if I were there…

  3. January 8, 2012 10:39 pm

    Wow, I am so sorry for you all. I have never had a plane trip with both kids yet, but have had many horrible car trips with both of them and seriously the first I thought was going to kill us all. A trip that should have taken 6 hours , took 10! I love the last part and if I had to do those car trips again, I would do the same.

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