Dear people of the world,
I have a request. It is hard for me to write this because I used to be one of you. It was not so long ago that I walked in your shoes. I too was a sophisticated traveler. There was a time in recent memory that I was flying first class from Athens to Rome. I hopped on a plane and flew from Barcelona to New York. I enjoyed my ipod, my books, my comfy leg room, and my lobster bisque. I, like you, prayed whenever I saw a child board a plane that they would not be sitting next to me. I scowled at parents who couldn't control their children and I silently mocked their helpless plights. I now feel ashamed.
See, I have become them. That woman running down the terminal with a screaming toddler on her hip while stuffing cheerios in said toddlers mouth has become sadly familiar. That parent on the plane who is bribing their child with every toy imaginable to no avail has become yours truly. Instead of carrying a bag filled with my journal, a bottle of water, and my wallet, I now carry a oversized bag filled with plush toys, Dr. Seuss books, and sippy cups. I now know their pain and I apologize for all previous mocking.
And I ask you to do the same. If a 1 year old is jumping on her airplane seat repeatedly and it is causing your seat to vibrate, don't get mad. If a baby is wailing because their ear hurts, try to understand. If a Mickey Mouse doll somehow gets chucked at your head in a screaming fit, calmly hand it back. And if you see a woman holding two children that are sliding down her leg and she is trying to open a stroller with one hand, for the love of Pete, please help her.
After all, you may one day be her. And she does not need your scorn. She needs your prayers.
The calm before the storm. Notice how she is wearing my watch. The, "I will do anything to keep her quiet" operation had already commenced.
The ghosts that haunt us
1 day ago