It’s a Friday afternoon. I board a plane with my two children. Final destination: Disney World.
Because I forget things and didn’t check us in on time, we got stuck with a crappy boarding assignment, but alas, my child is under 6, so we file in with family boarding.
I see a family of four: mom, dad, child, and toddler. It’s clear the toddler rules this family at first sight. Dad is struggling with a million dollar stroller that doesn’t seem to collapse as easily as the two year old who is lying on the floor screaming about having to exit said stroller. Meanwhile, mom stands above dad wrestling thrashing toddler dictating authoritative directions to dad who can’t figure out the difference in pull and push.
They board before us. Thank god so we don’t have to sit by them, but as we walk single file down the tiny aisle, I hear them before I see them.
“I want the window seat.” Toddler screams and snorts.
Mom says, “now we already talked about this. Your sister gets the window seat now, and you can have it when we come home.”
“I WANT THE WINDOW SEAT,” toddler refuses to relent.
Dad says to older daughter who is looking out the window ignoring her obnoxious brother, “let him sit there. Just for a minute.”
Daughter folds arms, “no. I’m not moving.”
Dad, “come on.”
Daughter, “no!” I mentally high five her and also mentally punch dad in the balls.
Mom takes a noticeable deep breath and says through gritted teeth, “no, Todd,” and makes crazy eyes at dad, “he sits here.” Kid screams. Traffic moves. I trudge forward.
My children and husband take a row of seats. I ask the man in the row adjacent (who isn’t seated but is standing) if I can have the aisle seat. He informs me he’s saving the aisle and the window seat. As if I’ll take the middle when there are several other seats available. Southwest Airlines at its best.
I choose the window seat behind my son, noticing the family already seated with a daughter about the same age as mine (5) sitting directly behind me. I can handle this.
Until I sit down.
Kid kicks my seat no less than 42 times before I have my seatbelt buckled, but I optimistically conclude she’s just getting comfortable.
(Kick count 8,488,911 times, and I’m one hour in flight.)
As we taxi the runway, I determine that she is playing one on one with Steph Curry on her tray table (which should be raised.) I try to internally convince myself that she calm down once the plane begins to move.
She screams, “weeeee,” which even in my annoyed state I find cute because I’m a mom and not an asshole, but then she just screams. Over and over again while still pounding on her tray table. It will get better. Surely.
Screaming, kicking, and reconstruction of the back of my seat ensue as I pray that the flight attendants will eventually come by and though I wasn’t planning to have an adult beverage, my temperment demands a vodka, and blessed sweet baby Jesus, they bring me one. I glimpse behind me and see her mother, sleeping peacefully in the seat next to her.
And then she turns on music. Justin Bieber. And she isn’t wearing headphones.
Meanwhile, the a-hole who was saving the aisle/window seats opens a plastic container of what is obviously a shite sandwich and begins to eat, filling the airplane with the aroma of an over used porta potty.
My daughter looks through the crack in her seat and pinches her nose at me.
“I know,” I mouth.
My drink arrives, and as I sip and read the contents of my newest book (Revenge of the Chupacabra by Kyle Abernathie), I try to block out the noise, the smell, the chair assault, and my overwhelming need to pee, and I pull out my phone to write this.
It is not edited. I am sorry. But a girl has to vent.
Kick count: 9,100,875,209,299,100 multiplied by pi squared.
There is not enough vodka on this plane.