Friday, March 12, 2010

Fear of Flying

I get to go to Michigan (yay!) to visit my mom and daddy on Tuesday, and I am so excited to see them! My daddy had a kidney transplant 5 years ago (I think it was 5) but that kidney finally gave out, so now he has to be on Dialysis again. It makes me so sad because I love my daddy "popparoni" so much. However, I am thrilled beyond belief to let him see his favorite granddaughter (okay, his only granddaughter). My mom is so excited to munch on Megan, and my 16-yr-old brother has never even met her. I definitely look forward to being in Michigan. It's the getting there part that scares the vomit out of me.

I haven't thrown up yet; I'm saving that for the plane.

I know I shouldn't be scared; zillions of mommies travel with their babies. Megan is 5 months old, and it's not like she's too young to travel. I guess it's just the fact that I've never traveled with a baby before.

I've been talking to my older, wiser, beautiful, generous sister Jazzy, and she's been telling me more about how to travel with a baby. She's been asnwering all my questions about what to check-in, what to check at the gate, how to travel (stroller or Baby Bjorn-style), what to do if you have to pee on the plane, what to do if you need to change a diaper on the plane, how to get water for a bottle, and a buncha other stuff I never had to think about before. All of that is a little bit stressful and will cause me to think a little more than usual. But this isn't what's scary to me.

It's really stupid, the thing(s) I'm scared about. Seriously, it's so dumb and I shouldn't even mention it because you'll just think I'm an overprotective, obsessive parent. But, yes, of course, I'll tell you.

I'm scared of someone stealing Megan. Or, I'm scared I'll somehow leave her somewhere and lose her. Or, I'm scared they won't let me on the plane with her because they won't believe me that she's mine, and then they'll want proof of adoption, but I don't have proof because the adoption isn't finalized yet. I'm scared that I'll be stuck in Denver and won't have anywhere to go because they won't let me on the plane. Or, I'm scared that I'll have to use the bathroom on the plane really, really badly, and I'll misjudge someone next to me and let them hold Megan while I go, and then come back and she'll be gone. Or, that I'll fall asleep on the plane with her in my arms, and I'll wake up and she won't be there. Or, I'm scared that some lady will try to steal Megan away from me, and when I find the security guards, they won't believe me and I'll never get her back. Or- and this is the stupidest one of all- I'm scared that somehow I'll run in to Megan's birthmom (which I know would never happen) and she'll say "can I hold her?" and I'll say "yes" and then she'll run away with her, and I'll never see Megan again.

What is my problem? Why is my
heart beating a million times a minute?
Tell me I'm not crazy and tell me you've had these feelings, too. Please? Even tell me a lie that you've had these feelings, and then I won't feel like such an idiot.

Okay. That's it. I'm going to go have some nightmares now, like I did last night...



Raven said...

Oh, you poor thing! Being a mom really does bring out the primal protectiveness and paranoia, doesn't it? We all have similar worries and concerns--these are our babies and they mean the world to us! You have some extra stuff added in because of all you went through to get Megan, I think. You will be fine. Megan will be fine. You will be together. You will have her with you the whole time, you will hold it and not have to pee, you will be blessed with kind and honest travel companions, and it will be okay. Just breathe :)

Sarah said...

YES! A billion times yes. I traveled alone with Carly and I had all the same worries. Bring what paperwork you have, you should have some sort of custody paperwork even though it isn't final. Chances are, they won't ask (they didn't with Carly when I flew from MI to CA). Being worried just means you love her. All will be well. Just repeat the mantra of adoption (and parenthood): Faith and trust.

mikensi said...

Take a deep breath! Pray and I'll be praying for you, too! I'm stressed about getting ON the plane (all the things you mentioned) with baby. Good luck, love you!

Desirée said...

The first thing you need to do is CHILL! I flew with Tommy three times before John finally had a trip with us, and all before he was 6 months! People are SUPER helpful. I loved carrying Tommy in the sling, it allowed me to use my hands, and sleep while he was sleeping without dropping him. It is hard to pee. There is no getting around that except to let someone hold your baby. You'll do just great. Again, people will go out of their way to help you.

Pam said...

i have had nightmares like that

Erin said...

Yeah, the peeing thing is an issue in the airport, that's why I recommend using a stroller so you can go in the big stall with her in the stroller. I brought Ainsley in a carrier the first time and had to hang her on the hook in the bathroom stall in the carrier. :) (don't tell anyone)haha On the plane, they can't go anywhere. And the flight attendants are usually very happy to hold a baby! :) You'll meet a lot of grandmas that will want to help you too! Don't worry, it will be fine.

Michelle said...

Yes, I have had some of those same fears, not necessarily when flying but if someone takes one of my kids and security doesn't believe they are my kids. As for the adoption not being final, bring any paperwork you do have from the courts (order of placement?), that is what we did when we flew with Nathan when he wasn't finalized yet and no one even asked for it. It is obvious she is under 2 so really there should be no need for any proof of anything.

No matter how you go through the airport (we prefer stroller) know that you will have to take Megan out (even if it is a carrier) and carry her through in your arms while the stroller or carrier go through the x-ray machine. I personally think the most ideal is to use the stroller, gate check it and bring the carrier in your carry-on for while on the plane.

If your airport has a family security line use it (some security check points in Detroit do, but not all). That way you can take your time and not feel rushed since it should just be expected that the family line takes longer.

Don't freak out if chosen to be screened for extra security. When Nathan was 5 months we flew into NY and then back home. On the return flight I was chosen to be randomly search, baby in arms and all. The TSA agents were surprisingly understanding and friendly during the screening, realizing I could only do so much while holding a baby in my arms.

Also remember you can bring enough liquid baby supplies to get you through your flight, even if it is more than 3 oz. We have brought juice boxes for the kids, baby food jars, and ready to use formula (which I would recommend buying a bottle for the flight because it is so much easier than dealing with powder and water) and just taken them out at security and never given a hard time about it. One guy had never seen the ready to use formula and asked what it was, then said let me check with my boss and came back and said it was fine.

As for the potty, remember if the plane is in the air baby can't be taken too far without being able to find her, that is if you choose the wrong friendly looking person to hold her like your fear states. In the airport the stroller comes in handy. I take my double stroller right on in to the handicapped stall with me.

And most important, once in Michigan make plans to visit with me :o)

Jessica said...

To get rid of your Denver worry - it is a great airport, and if you get stuck there my family will come save you. :D

J, C, and E said...

How on earth did you read my mind!? I had similar worries when flying back from Louisiana. Our biggest fear was if security would really believe that Evie was ours. Everyone was super friendly and extra helpful because of the obviousness (is that even a word?) of the adoption. Amen to all the hints and advice above. Everything will be fine and our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Leonard said...

Great post thanks for writing