We have traveled a fair amount with B since he was born. I’ve lost count of the number of flights but I suspect it’s around 50. So people often ask us, is he a good traveler? I really don’t know what to say to this question because I’m not quite sure what it means. Based on one’s definition he is either an awesome or really awful traveler.
When it comes to the logistics and the actual traveling part itself, he rocks. He loves airports, is awesome on flights, never sleeps really but doesn’t care because the whole experience keeps him happy. Although it’s a jinx, I can’t overplay how easy he is to fly with. He’s maybe fussed on two of his flights ever, never really cried or screamed. When you take him out of his stroller to go through security, he does not have to be asked, told, or cajoled, he simply throws his monkeys into the x-ray bin one at a time while saying, “One! Two!” and the TSA agents crack up. He says “Marcus has get picture taken in x-ray!” As soon as we board he makes himself busy talking about fellow passengers, watching planes out the window, and telling the flight attendants, “You want some water and pretzels!” After landing, he de-planes all by himself, carrying his own bag. He’s a slow walker but people generally don’t care because they either think he’s cute or they are so thankful that he wasn’t a holy terror on the flight that they give him a pass. So if that’s what people mean, yeah he’s the best traveler around.
Once we get to our destination though? He usually loves wherever we are and the friends and family we are seeing, so that is awesome. But he loves the people and the new place way too much to ever sleep. He keeps no semblance of a routine, stays up ’til all hours, never naps, wakes up early, and of course is up about 10000x per night. At first it doesn’t get to him because he’s running on pure adrenaline, but slowly the exhaustion eats away at him and then comes the so-tired-he-can’t-function stage. This particular trip ended with G walking circles in the backyard with him until he passed out. B would throw such a fit if he was taken to a sleeping location that G had to trick him into thinking they were going back outside to play with his cousins and finally B just collapsed on his shoulder- something that hasn’t really happened since infancy. He is also often too excited to eat which then makes him wake up at 4:30 am begging for breakfast. It comes as no surprise that after a round of airports, new places, and perpetual awakeness, trips often result in an illness of some kind. So if adjusting to new places and routines is what people mean, then no he is the world’s worst traveler.
In my darker moments I sometimes declare we are never traveling again, but that will never happen. There is truly no greater first world problem than what I’ve described. Overall we feel beyond grateful to be able to go to so many places, and mostly we just feel lucky that we have family and friends who not only tolerate but welcome us and our awake child into their homes time and again.