Flying Solo With Two
Ah parenting…just when you think you might be getting a handle on this gig….something comes along to remind you that really you don’t have it all figured out! Last week as some of you know I took on flying with both boys on my own. There is a LOT of logistics behind the scenes of our nation wide tour at the moment and for our Wellington leg the most efficient and cost effective way was for hubby to drive down (with the car loaded with stock) and me to fly down with both boys.
I was very glad that I had done a practice flight with just our big boy as it made me slightly more confident but I was still worried – could I actually do this? Would I end up with both of them running in different directions…actually this did happen! But travelling with the boys is a massive part of what we are hoping to create with our business so it was now or never!
Step one – get to the airport!
I thought I had timed things perfectly so that Sahan would sleep on the drive out to the airport….he stayed awake the whole time and literally two minutes before arriving at the shuttle both boys fell asleep. Luckily I had left a huge buffer (again something I learnt to do first time around) as I was very reluctant to wake Sahan as he would be have been slightly diabolical without a sleep. Arjun very rarely has a sleep in the middle of the day but I took the breather for 20mins waiting at the shuttle.
At the airport I was very glad for all our ‘equipment’. We had got both boys trunkies just before the start of the tour and they have loved having their ‘own suitcases’. We were really putting them to the test now! I did also have a carrier with me from one of our team members…this turned out to be a lifesaver!
Going through security Arjun buzzed as he had his beyblades still in his pocket and I didn’t notice and while I was still trying to get the bags up, keep Arjun calm as he got a bit of a fright being told to go back, Sahan just shot off, through security and running down a cornered off zone. It was Arjun who raced after him and basically tackled him to the ground – oh my life. After this I put Sahan into the carrier so I could actually get to the plane hopefully in one piece. I therefore had one child strapped to my chest and pulling the other child and the spare trunkie.
We made it upstairs and then I needed to change Sahan and encourage Arjun to go to the toilet BEFORE getting on the plane. Inside the parents room I was able to re-sort myself and think ‘it’s ok I have this’.
Come out of the parents room Arjun dashes away before I can get sight of where he went and Sahan went back down the corridor to the men’s toilets. Two children in two different directions.
Big breath…I have this and I have not actually lost my children at the airport (right?!). I am calling for Sahan while desperately searching for Arjun standing with two trunkies and am empty carrier on me.
Spy Sahan running from the mens to the ladies, grab him and then keep searching for Arjun – turns out he was straight ahead of me and up against the window looking at planes.
Ok just a mild heart attack.
I ‘stuff’ Sahan back in the carrier and tell him he is not getting out (like ever).
Luckily by this point we didn’t have to wait long to board the plane.
Get them both on the plane. Arjun was insanely excited in his special Arjun way that’s impossible not to catch!. The plane ride itself was manageable as admittedly it was short and both were strapped in their seats. Arjun spoke non-stop the whole time and asked a million questions. At one point Sahan did loose it over the tray having to be upright – cue major meltdown in the chair with full parenting skills on public display – more deep breathing.
I did give them iPads while in the air to have a breather for 10mins – boy was that very much needed. Had I also not been required to maintain ‘adulting’ in full form for a while longer I would have considered wine at that point too.
Surprisingly the decent was fine and neither of the boys ears really hurt… though I was mentally prepared for this.
Touched down, Sahan back in the carrier, last off the plane, last through the gate but all in tact…more or less.
I will be doing this again for the last leg of our tour down to New Plymouth and I am seriously considering a child-leash for this….
To all those that do long-haul flights, with children on your own I salute you!
xxx Dr Julie Bhosale