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That Guy

So we’re in Buffalo, successfully completing Ronan’s first trip in an aircraft to visit his grandparents.

It occurs to me that I have become somewhat secondary to my own parents. The whole point of the visit was to give my parents time with Ronan, and since we’ve arrived subtle and not-so-subtle hints have been left about getting out of the house and leaving Ronan with my parents to babysit. I think I’ve seen my parents more in the past four months than in the previous year, but who’s counting?[1]

Anyway, instead of a nice bath and a nap before a late-night feeding and going to bed, Ronan found himself in the strange environs of the JetBlue terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport. This required swiveling around and smiling at anyone within sight, and an absolute refusal to sleep in any position until the poor kid’s energy gave out and he feel asleep a few minutes before we boarded. If it wasn’t for the unexpected tornado earlier that morning that delayed all the flights, we would have gone out at 11 PM instead of 12:45 AM, but hey, who’s counting? [2]

Ronan was all smiles and light until the plane started to pressurize, and his new Eustachian tubes were in pain. This was evident in the high-pitched, sustained, never-ending wail that he let loos with, turning Terry and I into “That couple” as in “that couple with the crying baby.” As our fellow passengers gamely tried to pretend that they didn’t hate us, Terry and hunched over with the determination of bomb squad technicians to get Ronan to at least STOP WAILING AT THE TOP OF HIS LUNGS.

This involved repeated feedings, all refused. Daddy’s patented sleep position® that almost always results in sleep after a few minutes didn't work, either. In fact, I became "that guy" with the crying baby as I was on the aisle and holding Ronan brought the crying baby closer to the rest of the passengers. The woman next to me had obvious signs of displeasure as the screaming infant was rawing closer to her. She was having a bad day.

Finally Terry spent twenty minutes rocking in the car seat (plane seat?) while Daddy stretched across two seats to hold a pacifier in Ronan's mouth. Exhaustion and the pacifier finally took its toll, and Ronan went to sleep. Until the plane started to depressurize, then he woke up and started crying again. This time, not so much.  

Terry apologized to the fellow passengers upon landing, and they were very gracious, but it was also a 50 minute flight, so they knew this would end soon one way or another.

This was all a dry run for a three-hour flight to Florida at Christmas.  Wishful thinking on the part of my parents – Ronan will get used to plane travel by then and he won’t cry.

The thing is, I’m not used to plane travel after 38 years, so why should he be used to it after one flight?

[1]  I am.

[2]  I am.


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on August 11, 2007 11:39 AM.

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