As many of you know, the Family Doin’ Work is taking a much needed vacation to beautiful Hawaii next week. Who wouldn’t be stoked about enjoying Hawaiian weather, Hawaiian culture, Hawaiian drinks, and Hawaiian relaxation, right? Well, there is one daunting task ahead of me that has contributed to panic attacks and severe insomnia – and I’ll share it with you now.
Yep, you guessed it. I’m really not looking forward to flying for five hours with my 19-month old Daughter Doin’ Work.
You see, if my daughter’s past behavior serves as a predictor for her future behavior, then I would place my “enthusiasm” for this flight somewhere in between shopping at Babies R Us on a Saturday morning and repeatedly punching myself in the face. I enjoy my kid and I actually enjoy flying, I’m just not so sure that I will enjoy both of them simultaneously.
By the way, I have one thing to say to the parents out there who are thinking, “Man up, DDW. It’s not a big deal.”
Stop that shit.
I know you lost sleep in nervous anticipation about what your first plane ride was going to be like with your baby too, and you’re lying to yourself if you say otherwise. Being 30,000 feet in the air inside of a cramped chamber with over 100 people for five hours with no way to escape is daunting enough, but it’s even crazier when you have a toddler with you who refuses to sit still. Did I mention that when Little DDW is forced to sit still she can hit a shrill high note that makes Mariah Carey sound like Barry White? Did I also mention that I’m not looking forward to this?
OK, so most of this in tongue in cheek and I know that I’ll survive. Hell, my good friend at You Know It Happens At Your House Too recently travelled on a plane with her five young kids and she made it in one piece. But here’s the thing about being a new parent: Other parents with more “experience” will jump out of the weeds to provide advice on how to handle any situation, including how to handle a kid on a plane. As many of you know, I’ve received some really bad parenting advice before – but you won’t believe the stuff I heard in the past few weeks about this topic.
Check this out.
#1 – Whatever you do, don’t let her sleep before the flight: I don’t work for the United Nations, but I’m pretty sure that sleep deprivation is regarded as torture under international law. Just because my daughter terrorizes me on a regular basis doesn’t mean that I’m going to treat her like a terrorist.
#2 – Let her run up and down the aisles: OK, we all agree this is a dumb idea – but let’s roll with it. The cute thing about toddlers is that each of them has their own unique (and hilarious) way of running. Some can’t move in a straight line and others like to hop and skip like drunk kangaroos. My daughter’s running style is to “throw dem bows” like Ludacris whenever her feet start moving. Since Little DDW is built like a linebacker, I’m sure some unsuspecting sleeping passenger in an aisle seat would be concussed or in urgent need of dental work if I allowed this to happen.
#3 – Hire a babysitter to be with her during the flight: Yes, someone actually suggested I do this. So let me get this straight – I should pay for another person’s plane ticket and lodging in Hawaii just so I can hear Little DDW scream at the top of her lungs from the row behind me? The only thing preventing this from being the best idea ever is the fact that it’s the worst idea ever.
#4 – When she cries, just stuff her face with food to quiet her down: Anyone still wondering why America is the fattest country on planet? Anyone?
#5 – Just get drunk, then none of it will matter: Do you know when I came to the realization that this philosophy is not a good one? It happened after an epic night of drinking in college when one of my buddies bet me $20 that I wouldn’t eat a double cheeseburger covered in a thick coat of peanut butter. I was drunk, so it wouldn’t matter, right?
I won $20 that night.
I also spent the following 12 hours making out with the porcelain princess – but selling my dignity for $20 was sooooo worth it.
Yeah…I’m not getting wasted on my flight.
So now that I know what I’m not going to do, what brilliant plan does DDW have in store to get through this flight? You guessed it: The “DDW Plan.”
D = Dora (you better believe that I’ll put as many Dora The Explorer episodes that I can on my iPad without it exploding)
D = Dolls (Little DDW loves dolls, so I’ll bring her stuffed friends along for company)
W = Waiting (Waiting for her to get tired and fall asleep, waiting for the damn flight to end, etc.)
It’s probably not the most sound plan, but I’m sure MDW will have some better ideas to keep our baby girl entertained. Regardless of what happens on this plane ride, we’re excited to put the rough few weeks we had behind us and enjoy some time in paradise.
Wish us luck, RDWs!
Oh, and I’m officially opening the floor and soliciting advice. GO!