On Tuesday, August 9th, 2011 Zoe and I took to the skies! We’re in D.C.! Or rather we’re in Accokeek, Maryland which is about 45 minutes outside of D.C. Zoe is having a ton of fun seeing the sights and hanging out with her big cousins; I’m just tagging along for the ride. The next few entries will be dedicated to “Zoe’s Adventures in D.C. and Accokeek, Maryland.”
Let’s start with Zoe’s first plane ride!
Zoe was a total All-Star! We cruised through security and received Mommy and Baby “pat downs.” Then we strolled through the terminal sight-seeing and snacking while waiting for our plane to board. And though we weren’t considered for early boarding (despite the fact that we also had my 84 year old Grandmother in tow), we still managed to board without a hitch.
Our take off was super smooth and though my attempts to nurse sleeping beauty during take-off was met with a lull of Zzzz’s, Zoe remained fast asleep. Our 1 hour and 30 minute flight was a breeze…until preparation for landing.
As planned, I attempted to nurse Zoe during landing, but she was not in the least bit interested. She just wasn’t hungry nor was she interested in using me as a pacifier, as she so often tries to do. That’s when I knew was in trouble! As the plane continued to head for Reagan Airport, the ear pressure magnified, Zoe’s wails crescendos. I dared not to look around for fear that my gaze would be met by condemning gazes from nearby passengers. I guess Zoe and I were that Momma and Baby that most insensitive non-parents and parents complain about after the flight. Still, my main concern was getting Zoe to feel better.
I cupped the palms of my hands around Zoe’s ears and tried to create a suction to stabilize the pressure, while simultaneously rocking her on my lap while my Aunt patted her on the back. Still, Zoe’s wails persisted for about 5 minutes (or 10), I dared not stop our comfort routine for fear that she would start up again. And she didn’t. In fact, before we landed, she was fast asleep.
Sigh. I remember someone on facebook mentioning that babies should be put in a seperate section of the plane, something like second class citizens. It bothered me at the time to think that someone would be so insensitive. I still feel that way. The response was purely selfishly motivated. However, in light of the fact that babies do have a challenging time on flights, why not make the whole flying process baby friendly. I’ve listed my ideas for any Airline Carrier to consider. I’m more than happy to serve as a consultant.
*Place Mommy’s and Babies at the front of the plane where there is less turbulance and where we can receive optimal assistance when entering and exiting
*Seats should be like school busses where it is a bench with one large seat belt (that actually works).
*Tray tables should span the entire length of the seat/bench and also serve as a changing table
*2 flight attendants should be especially dedicated to this section of the plane
*If you are not a Mommy, Daddy or Parent/Child advocate with child in tow, you are not allowed to sit in this area
*Anyone who stares at a crying baby for more than 2 seconds has to sit next to the bag of dirty diapers.
I suppose this has become more of a wishlist than anything else. As I mentioned earlier, our society is not terribly baby friendly. Most people would prefer to sit next to a yapping chihuahua in a baby bag than an actual baby. But if I owned an airline, I would totally capitalize off of this market. It’s a win win for everybody (so long as the tickets are fairly priced and the facilities safe and clean). After all, us hard working Momma’s shouldn’t have to face a crying baby AND and crying adult!
Separate but equal has historically been a problem for us humans. In fact, in our histoy