So besides items to prepare for a flight with baby, there were things to be done in preparation for the flight.
Give all necessary medication
Thanks to my mum’s reminder, I gave Thaddeus his nasal congestion medication so that it may help him breathe easier during the flight. This medication could cause drowsiness but unfortunately, it does not usually work that way for Thaddeus. Darn! ;p
Load up both mommy and baby
We went for breakfast next because my folks and I expected that I will not get to eat during the flight. During breakfast, we got Thaddeus to drink his milk.
Fresh diapers before boarding
Just to make sure I get as much mileage possible from the diaper, my parents helped changed Thaddeus’ diapers before we went in the departure gate.
Mommy to offload
I don’t expect to be able to use the toilet during the flight and made sure I cleared my bladder while my parents watch Thaddeus.
Countdown to boarding time
Because I was not keen to shop around the duty-free shops with Thaddeus in tow, I waited til about 20 minutes before boarding time to go through the departure gates ‘cos once through this gate, means no more extra help from my parents!
Realized the damn gate was about 15-minutes walk away after we cleared the customs. I don’t think that estimation is for people with short legs like mine and carrying a 10-kg baby. So I had to walk faster to get to our gate.
Thaddeus started his usual crying before nap time at the waiting area. I looked apologetically at the other passengers and focused on trying to coax the little one to nap by singing into his ears.
It took us about 20 minutes of intensive crying before he finally settled down and fell asleep. That was probably one of the longest 20 minutes I have ever experienced with almost all eyes on us. The other passengers must be as relieved as I was! Thankfully, it was not a full flight and a small plane – not that many passengers!
The ground crew came to inform me softly that I could board with baby not long after he fell asleep.
Take whatever you need ‘cos the bag has to be kept in the overhead cabin
It’s a good thing that airlines allow passengers with kids to board first because I truly appreciate the space and time given to sort out the things that we’ll need during the flight and keep the bag in the overhead cabin.
Just get the crew to help, whenever needed
Because it was the first time I was traveling with baby and Thaddeus was in the pouch sleeping, I got the air stewardess to help us with our safety belts.
Brace yourself for take-off
I had his water bottle in my hand and was ready to stuff it into his mouth should he wake from his sleep and start crying. Ha! To my immense relief, Thaddeus slept through the take-off!
Be prepared not to eat, and probably not to have hot drinks
We were lucky that we had a row of 3 seats to ourselves! The crew left my meal on the table top furthest away from me. I couldn’t reach it when I wanted to get my hot tea and got the crew to help me shift it to the table top at the next seat instead. Soon after, my kaypoh son was woken up due to the commotion of the air crew moving the trolley and asking passengers their choice of meal. And as luck would have it, Thaddeus spilled my hot tea over our bag with his quick hand and started wailing. Thankgod he wasn’t scalded badly and stopped crying soon.
I placed him onto one of the seats and kept him entertained with all that I brought along while I cleaned up the mess myself.
Do not be paisey (scared of embarrassment)
He didn’t fuss much when he was awake as he was distracted by the air crew walking up and down the aisle, or when they stopped to play with him. I stood in front of his seat and took out everything in our bag to clean while playing with him every now and then. Sometimes it looked as if I was performing for him because I would be singing some of the tunes from his favourite cartoon shows. I think the passengers at the back must think I’m one crazy mother.
Let baby charm other passengers and air crew, if he’s in a good mood
Thaddeus discovered more people through the space between the seats and started peeping and smiling at the other passengers. The passengers seated behind us were quite amused and played with him too.
He would flash his cheeky grins at the air crew when they stopped to play with him as well.
This way, they wouldn’t be too annoyed when he starts his wailing again. 😉
Thaddeus coped quite well for landing too. He didn’t fuss but I did force fed him some water, just to be sure he was swallowing to release the pressure.
Keep baby snug
Because I will have to get our luggage off the belt myself, I made sure Thaddeus was kept snug with me. But this was a tad challenging ‘cos he was starting to lose his patience. We waited awhile for our luggage and I struggled with both to meet the husb’s cousins who came to pick us up!
Out the airport, I was very proud of us both for having survived the flight on our own!