Monday, August 10, 2009

Flying with a Toddler

We survived the airplane rides with Elliott, but barely. It was terrible. Really, I cannot exaggerate how horrible it was. I am so sorry if you have an upcoming flight with a toddler (and we have another one in December to North Carolina that I am terrified of). If you happen to be flying with a toddlers soon, here are some tips:

  • Be prepared that your kid may make everyone on the entire plane miserable with sounds and smells. Get over it because it is a real possibility.
Prior to take off, a passenger actually walked to the back of the plane (near where we were sitting) and asked to be reseated because she was sitting by a kid and parent. Well, the flight attendant noticed some seats around us but of course the passenger didn't want to sit near us either. It is like we had cooties. So my advice is just get over it. You will be treated like you have lice, cooties, swine flu. And actually we pretty much deserved that treatment from Elliott's behavior on the flight.

  • The advice everyone gives you is to make sure they are sucking (on a bottle, sippy cup, thumb, pacifier, whatever) on take off and landing to help them pop their ears and relieve pressure and pain.
I also gave Tylenol which some people suggest (apparently my bottle of Tylenol was defective and I'm considering taking it back to Target for a refund). Take off wasn't to uncomfortable, but landing was brutal. And here is what I learned: it is not the actual landing where the plan in touching the ground that is uncomfortable. It is the ENTIRE 30 minutes prior to that when the plane is slowly decending. That is when the screaming and thrashing started. And if anyone can give me advice about how to convince a hysterical toddler to suck on something, please let me know prior to our December flight.

  • A well rested toddler might be better than an overtired toddler.
We had kept Elliott up except for a short afternoon nap and hoped it might crash on the flight home because it was his normal bedtime. Instead we had an overtired, oversensitive, distractable, and MANIC toddler for the first two hours of our flight. And by manic, I mean LOUD. He was talking and singing in a very manic way. I actually wondered if my defective Tylenol had methamphetamines or speed in it. It was that bad.

  • Find the airplane restroom with the changing tray if you need to change a diaper.
YES there is one that was pointed out to me AFTER I had already changed his diaper with him while sitting on the toilet.

  • You can buy organic milk in a kid-sized carton that doesn't need to be refrigerated in the health food sections of most grocery stores.
It comes with a handy straw... which apparently is not long enough for the carton and even though we had an extra one, it CAN be pushed down into the carton fairly easily by an exploring toddler or the milk carton can be squeezed sending milk all over the airplane seats. So bring a sippy cup to put the milk in.

  • Obviously, bring lots of entertainment.
Especially all the things that are normally not allowed like cell phones, car keys and of course the bulb thing that sucks boogers out of noses.

  • Benadryl.
We didn't do this on this flight, but were considering it for our next flight in December. We'll either give some to Elliott or all the other passengers. We haven't decided yet.

1 comment:

  1. Oh Allison! How awful! I'm so sorry it was miserable. Lots of people use Benadry for their babies and flights. I see no reason not to at least try it. Though I've heard it is best to try it ahead of time as some kids become more alert after taking it. Just what I've heard...

    I hope you recover soon!