If you want to see people reduced to spittle-flecked maniacs yelling their opinions, bring up the subject of babies on airplanes in mixed company. (By mixed, I mean parents and non-parents). (And by company, that generally means the comments section on an article discussing babies and plane travel, because most people are usually more polite and less spittle-flecked when you are discussing heated subjects in person).
Babies can certainly make the misery of air travel much more miserable. I've certainly had my fair share of kicked seats and shattered eardrums. But even before LO came along, I tried to be understanding of the difficulties of a parent wrangling a child. I was sympathetic to the fact that it must be awfully hard to get yourself, your stuff, your child, and the metric ton of stuff necessary for your child's happiness successfully from one part of the country to another without committing any wanton acts of frustration upon another human being or packet of peanuts that happened to get in the way. So I thought I was prepared the first time that I traveled cross-country with LO.
I was sadly mistaken. As bad as I thought it must be for a child-wrangling traveler, it was worse.
Tonight, J, LO and I will be heading to Baltimore to see grand-mensches and attend my sister's baby shower. I hope that we will arrive in one piece, and without the concentrated hatred of all the other passengers on the plane. I hope that the extensive list of necessary traveling baby-gear that I have created and double-checked multiple times will not prove to be missing some vital object. (Diapers! I have to bring diapers!) I hope that starting at 11 am with packing, cleaning, stroller-breaking-down, dog-kennelling, bank-stopping, and (eventually) driving to the airport will give us enough time to make it through security and onto our 6 pm flight without having a screaming child before we even make it onto the plane. I hope I'll get a second or two to read my Kindle on the plane. (Ha ha! Just joking about that one. There's no reading when you've got a one-year-old on a plane!)
Wish us luck! Next time you hear from me, I'll be on a Coast.