Have you ever been on an airplane and the person next to you insists on making pleasant conversation for the entire flight? Now imagine…instead of a friendly stranger, it’s a wild, screaming two-year old who missed his nap, refused to eat lunch, and (shockingly) doesn’t want to be confined to a tiny seat for 2 hours.
This was my life about a month ago when we decided to take three kids on a plane. You could practically see the dread as we made our way down the narrow aisle on the plane, people's eyes pleading, "Don't sit near me. Don't sit near me!" I had seen some mom in the news that made individual bags of goodies for the people sitting near her baby and thought how brilliant that was! It acts as a buffer so they don’t immediately hate you for sitting within earshot of their seat. Then I remembered I have three children and don’t have time to be considerate towards the feelings of others anymore. Besides, if I had to suffer through it, so should they! At least after the two-hour flight their headache stops. (I’m just kidding! I really do love my children.) And in all honesty, the kids were behaving really well, thanks in large part to my husband who is seriously the best dad in the world. He always manages to keep them entertained with his endless supply of goofy tricks, so I sat back to relax. They were perfectly content. And that’s how I knew we were doomed.
There’s only so long your kids can act like little angels before something will undoubtedly go wrong. And we had hit our limit. We still had an hour to go in our flight and this time it was baby Ollie’s turn to grey my hair a little bit. He got quiet. Too quiet. I looked over at his scrunched up little face right before he let out that first grunt. Oh crap…literally.
What in the world was I supposed to do?! Have you ever been in an airplane bathroom? Yup…no room for a changing table in there. So I have a few options: A) I pretend it wasn’t my kid and blame the old lady in front of me. B) Squeeze the two of us into that pea-sized bathroom and wash his butt in the sink, or C) change him on my lap in (I kid you not) the very middle of the plane so everyone gets to enjoy it. So which option did I choose? You guessed it—option C. I was the asshole mom who chose to ruin everyone else’s happiness. By this point in my life, however, I pride myself in my ability to change diapers at lightning-fast speed, and I was on top of my game that day. I had him changed in less than 20 seconds. My husband—who was sitting in the same row—didn’t even notice. I call that one a win for mom. I stowed the funky diaper in the bottom of my diaper bag, put everything I owned on top of it to hide the smell, and prayed for a peaceful end to that flight. So next time you’re sitting next to that sometimes-too-friendly stranger on an airplane, you can think back to this story and count your blessings.