Tag Archives: Flying

Flying with a baby.

Flying with a baby will be easy they said, babies will just sleep they said. Em, let me just revisit what I can only describe as a very painful flying experience with my child. An experience that I am in no rush to revisit for some years. Let me elaborate.

Our travels back from Cyprus to reach home began at 315pm with a coach transfer to the airport from the resort we were staying at. Now, I knew that the time of day and travelling through dinner time as well as bed time could be an issue, little did I know just how much of an issue and the upset that was to come.

The bus ride from the resort to the airport was fairly easy going, Eleanor sat on my lap quite chilled out. Watched out the window and played with the window screen, there was little fuss and I was in good spirits, particularly good spirits considering we were headed for home and back to the daily grind. Although holiday was over, I was excited to get back into a way of life and routine.

We arrived at the airport and got through security with no issue, we had a coffee stop and a toilet trip to get Eleanor changed and freshened up for the flight. Our problems began soon after, a tired baby who refused to nap for the day and didn’t take much food is never a good sign. Waiting in the queue for the gate to open and board, I could tell the trip would be a bit of hell. The queue was massive, the plane was to be full and my baby was very grumpy and impatient getting, this would only worsen as the hours went by.

We finally got boarded and took to our seats on a full plane. To begin, we tried to entertain Eleanor as best as you can on a plane with limited space. We got out her toys from her travel bag and used them as a distraction for her, as this was failing, we tried her with some snacks. Eleanor was not in the mood to play, nor to snack, nor to even have her feed of milk. It was going to be one of those days only without the comfort of home.

The plane was very hot and we had to strip her off to her nappy to try and keep her cool along with a hand held fan. As Eleanor was becoming crannies more people began to intervene. The children in front of us tried to play with her and offered soft toys (she tried to gnaw on these) and I gave them back before the children were left horrified. We were offered words of support and guidance from those surrounding us and we shared sympathetic looks with another mother on board with a baby.

Eleanor was very upset and frustrated after a short period on the plane, with five hours to go of this we tired her with a dose of nurofen to rule out teething pains and a trip to the bathroom to change her. In honesty a change made it worse and she returned to her seta screaming and crying. As red as a beetroot and my heart was breaking for her. I’ve never seen my baby so upset and I was worried that the plane was too hot for her, I didn’t want her to have a convulsion from the heat or anything scary. There was little that I or Euan could do.

From hour three, probably two hours of crying down, this became a constant scream and attracted the attention of the whole flight. I rocked my naked baby in my arms as Euan fanned her off. I tried to offer her the breast but she refused and just wriggled about as though in pain and screamed. I was unsure what she wanted, I haven’t seen her in this way probably ever, a sight and experience that I do not want to revisit. Ever.

The holiday was great, but seeing Eleanor so upset and uncomfortable broke my heart and I have vowed to never put any baby through the stress of travelling again. I’ll never forget how upset she looked and how helpless that I felt in those hours on the plane. Did we push her too far unneccesarily?

We finally got Eleanor to sleep through feeding and rocking, it was painful and heartbreaking. I was worried d for my babies health and I hoped that she was okay as she lay along my torso flat out and hot. I watched her every breath like a hawk and monitored her through tears in my eyes. Travel was just too much for her and I’ll not put her through this for some years again. Not until she can walk, talk and tell me what she needs and wants.

When landed, we had to dress Eleanor who was like a rock from being so flat out. Trying to fully dress a sleeping baby is no easy task, believe me. We waited until near last to get off the plane to avoid the rush. We didn’t avoid the stares of others and the judgement from people as they passed, I wouldn’t have expected to either after the scene that was put on. I was glad to be going home as I’m sure all three of us were. The next goal was getting to the car and making it home for midnight.

Upon arrival home we just dumped our bags and got into bed soon after changjng Eleanor. What a day, what an experience and what a fright we all had. I felt hot and bothered just reflecting on the time we spent aboard the plane. Bed time was a long awaited treat, we were all exhausted and a good sleep was definitely required.

Though not a great experience to say the least, I’m glad that we gave it a go and if was worth while for some family time in the sun and a different climate bonding. Eleanor and Euan have grown a great bond and I’ve fallen more in love with my family than ever which is hard to imagine as I thought I couldn’t possibly have more love to give, turns out, I do.

If there is anything the trip has taught me, it is to chill out and relax more. Don’t live life so on the edge, take it as it comes and forgive yourself for mistakes and mess ups as they will happen, over and over. There’s no way to parent right or wrong, only what works in that moment. We can revisit and review, we can scrutinise and reflect on our abilities but we should never punish ourselves for what has been. We learn grow and move on and I am learning to be more supportive of my own decisions and confident of my parenting.

I’d not recommend to fly with a baby so young but you don’t know how it will go until you try, if you are getting set to jet off with a baby, all I can recommend is that you are as prepared as can be and are aware that it can go either way. Good or bad. Whichever way however, it wont last forever and a bad experience will slip to the back of your mind soon after landing.

For now, I’m sticking to those home comforts and local surroundings. I’ve done my time in the sun and I’ve had my fair share of stress that comes with holidaying as a three, baby in tow. I need to holiday to recover from the holiday, there is no two ways about that. As I return to work in a few short weeks, I am going to have some down time at home with my baby and making the most of the moments that we share together. I am keen to work on her development and milestones at home for the time being and enjoy as much cuddle time as I can possible get. I am all too aware that I will be back to reality soon and that my days with Eleanor all to myself are well and truly numbered.

 

Keren x

My anxiety for flying with my baby.

 

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Okay, here is the deal, I’ll admit that I’ve never been a great traveller, so much so that I don’t even drive my own car anymore. It gathers dust and I wait patiently for the day I can return it. I don’t know why I ever put myself through two years of lessons, each worse than the last and sometimes ending the lesson in tears. I pulled through, got my licence and have yet to put it to practice. The fear inside is too great to allow myself to get in the driver seat. I break out in a sweat and become so nervous that driving would be dangerous.

I get anxious while in the car, almost everything is a hazard, bus travel makes me nauseaus and causes me to stir in my seat uncomfortable, almost waiting for something bad to happen, I could never cycle and flying, well that’s a whole new level of fear. I’ve never been great with travel, from bad experience as a child and growing up clinging on to the back seats through my dad’s spells of road rage you can safely say that I’ve been put off.

I didn’t always feel this way with travel, I was never comfortable but the discomfort was never dear as such. At least not to the extent that I struggle now. There has always been an element of unease when I’m not on my own two feet but from my time being pregnant, this is when the anxieties really built up and public transport even became an issue.

I think this could be from a protective instinct. As a Mother, I want to protect my baby to the best of my power but when putting our lives into the hands of others, that element of protection gets a little lost and I become vulnerable in a situation that is outwith with my control, as does my child. So, how am I feeling about flying with my baby in just a few short days?

To be honest, I am afraid. I’m excited to get away and have a family holiday to make lasting memories and cherish the last of our time together as a family of three before my return to work. I’m excited to ring in Euan’s 30th birthday on a high and ensure that he has the greatest birthday he has had yet and I’m looking forward to a much required break and a little time to reflect.

However, with the excitement comes the fear and the anxiety. The last time that I flew was during pregnancy, I was just shy of 12 weeks pregnant and we were headed for Vegas, a surprise trip that Euan booked (long before the pregnancy news) . Though I managed and was safe, the flight was daunting. The plane was delayed hours with a technical engine fault.. Just what you need to hear before flying and the turbulence was so extreme that I’ve never known anything like it. Euan slept as I held on for dear life with tears in my eyes. When we got home, I was suffering with extreme sickness for a few days and had a spell of time off work. Blame the pregnancy all you want, I’m sure it was something to do with that flight home.

Though this time around we have a short flight and have chosen to sit together, I can’t help but worry. The feelings of the motion sickness come rushing back and I have laid awake for the past couple of nights worrying about the flight. I am well aware of the safety checks and all that go on before boarding but what happens up in the air is out of my control, out of anyone’s control for that matter and this scares me.

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I’m travelling not only with my partner but with my baby and it is my duty to keep her safe, I can’t help but feel that while during a flight, there is little I can do to keep her safe, all I can do is hope for an easy journey and for my baby to remain content for the duration. I’ve taken enough supplies to keep her comfortable and fed, I’ve got all the medical supplies that I should need and I have a few toys, teethers and books to entertain.

I am quite certain though that Eleanor will just feed and sleep for the most part, especially as she takes comfort from feeding and if she does feel uneasy she will feed herself to sleep. Or at least this is what I hope for. We will keep to her routine as much as possible so that she doesn’t become out of sorts or mix up feedings and meal times.

Why book a flight when you are afraid you ask? Well, during the time of booking I didn’t feel this way. I’m never a great travel companion but I always manage, I didn’t expect to feel this way so close to the trip. I expected the highs to outweigh the fears and uncertainty that could form. Unfortunately, there is no masking my fear of flying and general travel with my baby but I will get by. So long as I can keep my mind busy and try to become as relaxed as possible it will be okay. We will arrive at our destination before we know it and I will wonder what all the fuss was about.

Euan is a great traveller and tends to keep me sane. Without him, I’d never stray far from home, never mind trips abroad. I hope that Eleanor develops his good sense of travel and lust for life, leisure and fun. All too often I let my fears hold me back and miss out on new experiences. Something that I have come to terms with as I’ve grown and deal with but I’d not like for Eleanor to miss out on anything that she would like to do or to try. I hope she is as fearless as her Father but will always remain sensible and not venture too far from her comfort zone.

Has anyone else out there flown with a young baby before? If so, how did the trip go? Have you developed a fear of travel or had your fear grow since you have become a parent?

I know that I may be being a little sensitive and Iver protective but as a Mother I feel it is my duty to remain sensible and responsible. I am responsible for my baby and I wish no harm come her way, or anyone else’s way for that matter. I just fear that when the situation is out of my control I get a little (a lot) anxious and my mind wonders, it can wonder into places and thoughts that I didn’t even know I had.

I’m off to stock up on some herbal calms and magazines for the flight. Anything that can help relax me and distract my mind the better. I’m sure come Wednesday morning the holiday mode will get turned on and any worries will fade away into the background, over shined by the thought of some precious family time in the sun. If all else fails, flights still offer wine, right?

Wish me luck, I’ll be sure to update you all on how we get on. I’m switched to holiday mode and the blog has to take a little break so that family time can take the top spot. Headed for some down time in the sun with my lives. Speak soon,

Keren x