Trip to Florida: Flying with a baby

I found this post in my Drafts folder and thought it was still worth posting. We went to Florida in March and had Audrey with (Josie stayed home with her grandparents). 


We missed our flight. Of all of the flights I've been on, I've never missed one. The worst part of it was that it was my own fault. I was over confident with how long it would take us to get checked in and through security, because every single time I've flown in the past we get through and then wait for a solid hour. I figured cutting off a half hour wouldn't make a huge deal. I didn't take into account that we passed our exit and spent 20 minutes getting back on track, parked farther away, needed to be shuttled to the airport, had to wait for a lady that wasn't paying attention at check-in, and then had to get to the other side of the airport after security.

Oh well! The day was long since the next flight to Jacksonville wasn't until 7:30 (opposed to our original 12:15 flight). We had anticipated that it would just be a travel day anyway so we had no plans that needed to be rescheduled once we arrived. We got to our hotel room around midnight and crashed hard.

This little adventure showed us once again how compatible we are together. I was stressed out when we were trying to get to the flight that we missed, but other than that, we stayed relaxed, went with the flow, and tried to enjoy the experience even though it wasn't ideal. Hubby told me that if he was doing it alone, he would have been freaking out since he hasn't ever had to deal with airlines, ticket booking, planning itineraries, etc. I would have also freaked out if I was alone since I hate when things are out of my hands (something I am going to have to work on for the rest of my life I'm sure).

Audrey was great considering the circumstances. She cooed and laughed, slept when needed, ate when needed, and won over a few people hanging around near us. The first flight was perfect. She ate right before we left and was asleep before we even got off the ground. I was worried about her ears not adjusting to the change in altitude, but she had her pacifier and it must have done the trick. She didn't wake up until 30 minutes after we had landed, so it gave us time to get situated in the Chicago airport before she needed our attention.

By the way, the Chicago airport is a zoo right around 4-7 pm. I've been there numerous times so it didn't phase me, but hubby was surprised by how busy it was on a Thursday. A lot less room to sit with a huge stroller (which was wonderful to have with regardless of it's size) and a lot more maneuvering between groups of people that were oblivious to people trying to get by. Again, we work well together so it didn't stress us out... one of the major keys to traveling is to go with the flow and not get hung up on the things you can't control.

For example? The second (longer) flight of the day was in the evening. Audrey's always fussy right around bed time and this was no exception. She fussed for a solid 20 minutes even with me doing everything I could think of to get her to sleep. I swaddled her, tried feeding her, sang to her, rocked her, bounced her, and still she just wasn't happy. Thankfully she did fall asleep and stayed asleep until we were off the plane, but my mama fears of annoying everyone around us were on high alert. Nobody complained and she was probably a lot quieter than we imagined since she was fussing more than all out crying, but I just didn't want to be "those people" with the screaming baby.

We looked at each other numerous times throughout the day and said "I'm so glad that Josie's not here." It isn't that we didn't miss her, because every time we saw a kid her age we both were immediately a little choked up (inside), but the idea of having to be in an airport all day with a runner like Josie was enough to be thankful for her staying with her grandparents instead of flying down with us. There will be many more trips for her to go on with us in the future.

We also both agreed that we most likely will not be flying with either of the kids again until they are old enough to sit and behave in a plane seat by themselves. Audrey is great now, but in a few months she'll be a lot more mobile and we're not that interested in flying with a super mobile baby any time soon. We will still go on vacations, but we have plenty of things within driving distance to check out.

Our return flights went better than we could have hoped. She slept through both flights and was only awake for about 10 minutes at the end of our last flight. We had an extremely short layover (20 minutes) before boarding the second and last flight, so there wasn't much time to sit around and burn off some of her energy, so we weren't expecting her to be so good during that long flight. Thankfully, she must have just been exhausted enough because she was out for almost the whole thing. I think the lull of the plane engines acted as a sound machine because she was sleeping hard. She didn't seem to mind the movement or change in elevation. Overall, I couldn't have asked for it to be better.

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1 comment:

  1. interesting to review, even if it is old - what a miracle that trip turned out to be, could have been so bad if Audrey hadn't complied. . but I think you are wise to hold off for the next flight!