Mother of Dragons: The Battle, Flying with Kids


I have not written on my blog in such a long time. The scariest thing is a blank piece of paper. My writer’s block seems to be inspired by that blank piece of paper (and also by the ungodly amounts of time we have been spending watching our new obsession “Game of Thrones”.)
In 4 days I am embarking on another idiotic adventure. I swear something is wrong with me to do this again. I’m out of my mind or maybe Im tough as nails…

They look sweet, don’t they? Nope. they are really baby dragons

Flying with children reminds me of giving birth. Its such a terrible experience but somehow after a few weeks you forget the torture and pain and end up doing it again. Who the hell would fly 24 hours with two kids one of which is on my lap? Oh, that’s right, to trade dry desert heat for southern steaming heat. But lets be honest, I’m partaking in a 24 hour nightmare to have the ability to wear tank tops and shorts, drink a multitude of alcoholic beverages and eat bacon until my heart is content. Summer in Kuwait is kind of like winter in the south. You can’t go outside and there is literally nothing to do. Apart from my selfishness for a tasty beverage, I really want to show my kids a really wonderful summer. I want them to be licking a melting popsicle while running through a sprinkler at high speeds. I want to go to the beach and be covered in sand from head to toe with a smell of sunscreen in the air. I want to BBQ with friends and family, take boat rides, then after you are all salty and sweaty, head to the outside restaurant on the beach and have a Corona and complain about the sunburn. The other day I asked my oldest son ( who will be turning 4 years old in a month) if he was excited to go to the beach. He said “No, I just want to go to the Mall.” WHAA? Then I realized my kids are totally Kuwaiti. They are old enough to enjoy the best things about life and haven’t even been able to yet. So my husband offered to let us go home and leave him to slave away in 120 degree heat. What a kind man he is. So this is why I have decided to fly so far…my Homeland.

Trying to capture some summer while still in Kuwait.

I don’t know if I have ever really talked about how hard it is to fly with children. F-king awful. I likened flying with kids to water boarding. People complain about how sucky it is to be on a plane with babies or kids, as if they never were kids. Sucky for you? Put on your ear phones and shut up. Try being the parent that had to pay EXTRA for the kid to sit in my lap for 17 hours. Or having to fold up that stroller at security every damn time and somehow it always gets flagged for explosives. Or packing a gazillion diapers that you never end up needing but you KNOW that finding a package of diapers in matters of distress in an airport is like finding an iceberg in the desert. What about the fear that sets in when you see the line at customs is 9 miles long getting in the middle of the winding road, one of the kids says he has to poop and can’t hold it. Or security rummages through your bag because one of those stupid hot wheel cars registered as metal that apparently looked like an atomic bomb in your perfectly organized mom bag. I once stuttered giving names and birthdates to customs. They questioned me for an extra 5 minutes. I wanted to scream “ Im not a weirdo, I just flew 20 hours and literally can’t remember my own name.”
My baby dragons are actually really good and I can count on a few fingers the time they’ve melted down which is not to say they wont, baby dragons are not tamable.. Its not crying or meltdowns that scare me (although they do, thats a lie). Its the small battles. Its the spilled orange juice in my lap 2 hours into a 10 hour flight, leg 2. Its puke on the second set of clothes at 35,000 feet. Its bringing the wrong type of cheese crackers then accidentally opening them when HE wanted to first (warning that cant be undone). Its pooping, because we know how kind high altitude is to stomachs and tiny ears. Its teething attacks. Its holding one kid on the toilet and holding the other in my hands somehow in a bathroom the size of a litter box. Its the rude man beside me that give me dirty looks because maybe I’ve affected his comfort level. If you want comfort, by a first class ticket or cut your ears off either way this is your life for the next ride, buddy. My kids might be loud. Most of all its plane malfunctions and plummeting to my death that secretly terrify me. My husband has sat me down and told me that the percentage of you dying in a plane crash is the equivalent to being struck by lightning 7 times. He works on planes, he knows them he says. I know he’s full of shit. I see the shade green he turns when we take off. I never was afraid of flying until I had kids. When you are not responsible for what happens to them on the air traveling tube of bacteria (planes are gross), its anxiety at its highest. Valium please?
The way I look at these adventures is like preparing for battle. You have to be strong, have an arsenal of weapons including toys, iPads, juice, and snacks. Kids have an attention span of a squirrel. You have to be calm and wear an armor of sunglasses and and a hat so people don’t see you cry after that orange juice trickles down your leg, the puffs go flying everywhere and your arm aches from pretending to be a make shift crib for a 30lb 1 year old. You need an army of “in case of”, and you hydrate enough to keep from passing out but not enough to ever have to get up to pee. EVER. No peeing, seriously. You can pee in 24 hours. You cant go into “battle” with any kind of expectations. You can pray that your kids get along, that you bring the appropriate sippy cup because lord knows toddlers will go apeshit about the color for no reason, hope that whining thing they do is kept to a minimum if only for your sanity alone. And finally pray that you grow Mr. Bolt’s legs to get you all on the next plane when your layover is 1 hour in Atlanta (the largest airport ever.) If we make it there…
You are, in a sense, marching into a battle. Putting on your brave face and most comfortable yoga pants money can buy. You are gonna at least act like you know what you are doing. All the while, Containing the urge to scream, the urge to pee, the urge to medicate your children, the urge to jump out of that plane.
I tell myself I can do this. I can inspire other moms to travel with their children.
Flight schedule:
flight one: 7 hours
flight two: 10 hours
flight three: 2 hours.
total time 25 hours including time at airports before and layovers
Just one step, one hour at a time…

Totally doable, right? After all, I am the REAL mother of Dragons. I am strong. I am going into battle. Kaleesi has got nothing on me…

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