Welcome to my Weblog!
Welcome to 1 Mother 2 Another! To read my most recent weblog entries, scroll down. To read entries from one category, click the links at right. To read my journey from the beginning, click here. To find out more about me, click here.
Top 5s
Short on time? Click here to go to my Top 5s Page - links to my top five recommendations in every category from Breastfeeding Sites to Urban Living Solutions.

Getting There

I know I’ve waxed rhapsodic about our recent family vacation, but in the interest of full disclosure I feel honor-bound to tell you about the worst part of our trip – just to even things out.

That would be our first travel day.

Flying on frequent flyer miles, we had a 6:30 A.M. flight out, which meant waking the girls up at 3:30. A.M. Not a huge deal, except that they’d stayed up until nearly midnight the night before – not too excited to sleep, as you might imagine, but too sad to sleep.

Yes, my children were about to take a dream trip to Hawaii and were sobbing, heartbroken, at the thought of leaving their home, their friends, the cat. SOBBING. I loved on them, trying to stifle yawns as I talked about how it’s ok to be sad when something is changing, and it’s ok to be excited even as you miss what you leave behind. Whatever.

At any rate, we dragged ourselves into the car and drove through the dark to the airport, where we implemented Operation Cheap Skate: rather than pay two hundred bucks to park close by, I’d calculated we could save over a hundred dollars if we parked in remote parking. My master plan called for Brian to drop us off outside the ticket counter, where we’d drag ourselves in there, get our three bags checked in, then wait patiently for Brian to come back on a shuttle bus so we could all go through security together.

My brilliant plan failed to take into account the fact that at o’dark hundred, not all ticketing counters are open and we needed to walk a bit to one that was. Which would not be a big deal – we’re just talking a hundred yards or so, just the length of a football field - but for that fact that it was me, my mother, three HUGE suitcases, two car seats, four back packs, and three wheeling carry-ons. And two sleepy kids.

How does one go about transporting this ginormous load of stuff? I’ll tell you. We did a leapfrog relay, dragging a few things ten feet, bringing the kids up with us, then going back for more. My mom would move the first load forward while I went back for a third while the girls sat on the second – all the while keeping our bags (and children) within constant eyesight. The girls’ heads swiveled like owls, watching this relay race that would have been, in other circumstances, cause for cheering: “Go, Mommy! You can do it! Don’t drop the car seat – you can balance it on your head while you carry a backpack and drag a suitcase! Yes you can! Yes you can!”

At 4 a.m., not so fun.

So we got within ten yards of the ticket counter, and I parked the girls. My mom was planning to check all the bags in under her ticket – she gets free checked luggage – so I stayed with the girls while Mom dragged one suitcase to the ticketing line. She turned to go for another one in the empty pre-dawn terminal when the ticket agent said, “Oh, no, you can’t – you can’t just walk away from that bag! You gotta stay with it – government regulations!”

My mom, suppressing admirably a desire to swear, explained that she had to get her other bags, which were RIGHT OVER THERE. I began waving frantically saying, “I’m watching her bag! I’m watching it the whole time!” but the ticket agent, bless her rule-following heart, was having none of it. Finally the man behind my mother kindly said, “I’m in line and I will watch your bag for you. I will vouch for its safety.” The ticket agent glared but succumbed.

So we got all three bags to the ticket counter, and then the agent – bless her heart – said that because my name was on one of the bags she needed to see my i.d. I looked at my bleary-eyed children, sat them on the mound-o-backpacks, and said, “I will be RIGHT OVER THERE. Ok? Can you stay RIGHT HERE and don’t DO ANYTHING?”

They nodded.

I met up with the ticket agent – bless her heart – and gave her my driver’s license. As she processed my i.d. she said, “Where are the children ticketed on this flight with you?” I gestured back behind me and turned to look at my girls –

Just in time to see Maddie gag three times, then hurl all over the terminal.

Suddenly we were those people.

I did not think – I just acted to try to control the damage. Spotting a trash can in a corner perhaps thirty yards away, I sprinted at break-neck speed to grab it before Maddie spewed again.

Do you know one thing you should never do in an airport? Run at full speed away from your stack of luggage.

Yes, a security officer saw me running, dropped into a crouch with a hand on his holster and said, “What are you doing, MA’AM?”

Not breaking stride I said, “My kid’s throwing up, I’m getting a bucket!”

He backed away. Quickly.

I got back to my poor girl, who was white as a sheet but said, “Hey, I feel GREAT now!” The ticketing agent, now my best friend, handed me a wad of paper towels and I began cleaning the floor. We got it all cleared up and I said to Maddie, “Are you ok? Do you feel like you need to throw up again? Does your tummy still hurt?”

And all the time I was checking her out, I’ll be honest here: short of a massive internal hemorrhage, we were GETTING ON THAT PLANE. If Maddie was going to be sick in bed, that by-golly bed was going to be in freakin’ Hawaii with the sound of the freakin’ ocean outside our window. No way, no how, was I canceling our flight. Suck it up and grab a barf bag, kid, and who cares how many germs go into that recycled air.

I’d like to say that if she’d continued vomiting or presented a fever or anything, I would have relented and done the responsible thing. I’d like to say it, but I just don’t know.

Fortunately, I did not have to make that call and it seemed Maddie’s stomach was a matter of nerves, not illness. Maddie had concerns about going through the security checkpoint and had worked herself into a lather.

One of the good things about having a kid puke in an airport terminal? They rush you right through security. Everyone was all smiles and kindness, and the girls and I got to skip the big scanning machine. Thank you, my little puker.

Once at the gate, I notified the flight crew that Maddie had thrown up and we’d need an extra bag at our seat just in case. The flight attendant got that fake smile on her face that says, “Someone just farted around me but I’m going to pretend I can’t smell it.” Listen, lady, not my favorite way to start the day either, but I figured you’d want to know.

Boarding the plane, I thought I’d push my luck one more time and see if the puking card could get us some seat rearranging. We were in a row that was three seats, an aisle, then three more seats, and we had a window and middle on one side, then a window and middle on the other. I thought I’d try to get all three seats on one side and the aisle on the next so we didn’t have to worry about bothering strangers with bathroom breaks, dvd sharing, snack passing, and so on.

“Excuse me,” I said to the tall businessman on the aisle of my row. “Would you and your friend consider trading your aisle seats for a window and middle, so my family can be together?”

He looked up and said politely, “Well, I’m a tall man, so I think I’ll stay where I am, but thank you.”

I smiled and said, “I understand. It’s just that we’ll be passing things back and forth and needing to get up for a bathroom break frequently and such, and I didn’t want to bother you with our family needs.”

He smiled back and said, “No problem, I’ll help out however you need.”


I grinned widely and said, “Ok, that’s great! Especially since my older daughter’s been puking, and may need to get to the bathroom again quickly.”

And guess what? The guy did not budge.

I know- I can’t believe it either.

I kinda wish she’d puked again. Just once. On him.


Post a Comment

House Rules

Here are the rules for posting comments on 1mother2another.com. Posting a comment that violates these rules will result in the comment’s deletion, and you’ll probably be banned from commenting in the future.

1) Register first. If you would like to post a comment, you must create an account with us. Check out the home page to do so.

2) Constructive comments only. If you cannot maintain a respectful tone in your posting, even in disagreement, your comment will be deleted. We’re all trying to find our way in this thing and are struggling to be the best moms we can. If you disagree with something I say, feel free to politely email me. If you disagree with another reader’s posting, you’re welcome to kindly post in reply. Vitriolic diatribes will be deleted. This site is about encouraging and supporting, not tearing down and chastising.

3) Questions welcomed. If an entry raises a question, you’re welcome to email me directly or post it. Keep in mind that postings will result in public replies by strangers and not just me.

4) Don’t steal. All original writings contained within this website are under copyright protection. If you link to us, please credit us as your source and provide a link back to our website. If you're interested in using an excerpt in published material, please contact us.

5) Share your photos! We'd love to have photos from our registered readers to show on our home page under "Maddie's friends". Email us a jpeg of your little one's best photo to photos@1mother2another.com. Please, no photos from professional photographers which fall under copyright protection.