We are flying to my parents for Christmas. The drive to TN for Thanksgiving was rough, not because Tyler was difficult, Tyler was an angel, but because Ryan and I both worked a full day and were exhausted. The drive back was even worse, we sat in traffic for three extra hours due to multiple accidents and didn't even get home until 2am. Do we want a repeat of that, no thank you, so we're flying.
I'm a nervous wreck about this. I've never flown with a kid before, let alone tried bringing a ton of crap through security including milk and food. I've done my research, talked to people who have flown with kids and even contacted TSA just to make sure I know what to expect and have all my ducks in a row. The LAST thing I want to do is have them tell me we can't fly, we miss our flight or end up having to leave something we need behind. I'm nervous about security, but I have my head around it. The actual flying however makes me want to twitch.
Have you ever been on a flight with a baby? More than likely the baby starts screaming when the air pressure changes in the cabin. The kid doesn't realize that his head isn't going to explode and starts screaming because he's uncomfortable. Babies can't talk, it's their only form of communication. Never, not in all my flying have I ever seen anyone be nice and understanding with the parents of the screaming kid. They get dirty looks, they're avoided, I've heard them be cussed out. Is the screaming kid annoying? Yes. Is it the parents fault? No. It's not the babies fault. The baby doesn't understand, he's too little. I remember being on one flight and some dude reamed a mom out. Her baby was crying, and she was doing everything she could to calm him down, nothing was working. Homeslice over there told her that if she was half a decent mother she would be able to control her kid. This dude obviously knew crap about babies, kids, or women. I felt terrible for her. The rest of the flight she tried consoling her baby with tears streaming down her face.
I don't want Tyler disturbing everyone on the plane. I don't want dirty looks from everyone. I don't want to be cussed out or told I'm a crappy mom. I don't care if these people know me, know my kid, know how I parent or not, I don't want any of that to happen. Who would? So for that I'm nervous.
This brings me to my main point. Why are people so intolerant of babies on planes? Their BABIES, they can't help it, they don't know any better. Adults however, do. We're not tolerant of the crying baby who doesn't understand what's going on, but we're tolerant of the lady crowding our paid for seat with her kitting bag. We're tolerant of the dude who's stomach and legs spill over on to our laps. We're tolerant of the lady who wants to talk our ear off the entire flight, and the dude who wants to whine about his divorce, and the guy who watches porn on his laptop the whole flight, and the girl who's Lady Gaga music is so loud you can hear it through her earphones. We're tolerant of the dude in the seat behind us who keeps kicking our seat, but we're not tolerant of the crying baby. Why are we not tolerant of the baby? Because the crying baby is annoying and it bothers us. Dude's stomach, knitting needle lady, porno man and tall seat kicker guy are also annoying, but we don't give them dirty looks or tell them their crappy for being large, knitting or too tall. We tolerate it. We think, "Oh great, dude's stomach is in my face, oh well, it's not like he has anywhere else to go." Or, "Of course, I would get the seat in front of Lurch, oh well, he can't help he's tall." Yet the minute a baby screams you hear, groans, sighs, see eye rolling and dirty looks in the kid's direction.
Well, I'm sorry you're inconvenienced, but it's a flight, not forever and you can deal with it. Chances are someones just as annoyed with you as you are with the crying baby and they're being polite and keeping their mouth shut and glares to themselves. Every flight I've ever been on that had a screaming baby I didn't give them dirty looks or said anything rude, the problem is, I didn't say anything at all and perhaps I should have. Perhaps I should have told the rude guy that told that mom she was crappy that I thought he was crappy that he obviously hadn't brushed his teeth in 10 years and I had to sit next to him the entire 2-hour flight. Perhaps I should have defended those parents who were given hell for trying to get to their family on the other side of the country, those parents who couldn't find a job near family and had to settle for a job many many hours away. Those parents who were just trying to get their baby home so that he could meet his grandparents.