Monday, June 11, 2012

12 hours plane journey with 1 infant and 1 toddler!!


That was a mouthful and tiring subject on its own yeah? Yes! That's exactly how I embarked my journey back from Malaysia exactly 3 weeks ago. As most of you might already know, the 4 of us went back to Malaysia in late March. The kids and I stayed on till May for my brother's wedding. Unfortunately, Iskandar couldn't stay on because he was on work probation and could only get 3 weeks time off. A lot happened when he went back to the UK and left the kids with me, but that will be a different blog update altogether :)

So, everyone asked me the same question every time they hear I was going back with both kids all by myself, "how will you manage with 2 kids on the plane??", "what if 1 of them starts to throw tantrum suddenly? Will u cope??". Everyone had their concern and was doubtful about my journey back home to the UK. To be honest, I couldn't give any rational answers when I was bombarded with these questions. All I could answer was, "InshaAllah, with Allah's will, I will be able to handle them on my own."

When we booked our tickets, the plan wasn't for me to bring both kids on my own. The initial plan was for Khairaldin to travel with my brother via Emirates and for me to travel with Layina via MAS on the same day. Somehow, the plan changed because Emirates didn't have any spare seat for Khairaldin. Since I've already booked for Layina and my flight via MAS, I had no other choice but to book for Khairaldin's flight with us. In all honesty, I wasn't prepared for this ordeal at all. But with so much faith in Allah, I took this opportunity as a Mother. Everyone who knew about my travel arrangements started to label me as a "SUPER MOM". All I have to say is, I'm no where near that title.

So, here's how our travelling went. I have to say, Alhamdulillah shukur for such a superb and easy travelling provided by MAS. Staffs were helpful and everything was just bearable from the check-in counter onwards. We + my parents arrived the airport at 8am and dropped our luggage at the check in counter. We requested for a travel assistance since I had 2 kids with me. At first they didn't have anyone to assist us but they had that initiative to get someone nonetheless. I had to wait for someone to assist us at 9am. So, we just continued waiting at the departure lounge. By 9, one of the staff came to help us out. Well, the reason I needed help was only to have someone to pull my hand luggage. Khairaldin was in the pushchair and Layina was in the baby carrier. It wasn't a problem in that sense.

Good thing about having assistance is that they assist you right into the aircraft and everything is priority; priority lane for passport checks, priority for boarding pass checks and of course the first one to get onto the plane! It was amazing! No hassle at all Masha'Allah. I was so glad. I would have given the young boy some tips, but by the time I settled down in my seat he has already pass his duties to the steward(ess). Didn't get a chance to say proper thank you. Guess he was scared if the plane took off hehehe. He'll be in my du'a, inshaAllah.

Oh yeah, I didn't request for a bassinet seat because when travelling with Khairaldin before, he didn't like sleeping in the bassinet. So I thought, it's ok, give others the opportunity. But I really wanted at least the whole row to myself. Before we took off, I asked the steward if there was any vacant rows. Unfortunately there wasn't any. Flight wasn't that full, there were spare seats but not rows. However, a guy sitting at the bassinet seatings offered to give his seat to us. I accepted his offer and swapped seats with him. It's very nice of him! After swapping seats we waited patiently to take off. Just before take off Layina cried for milk. I thought, that's good at least she'll get her nap straight away. Seeing that our flight was at 10:05am, it's the time she normally have her naps. So I breastfed her and by the time we took off she was already sound asleep. The stewardess then assembled the bassinet for her and I put her in it straight away. Little did I know, Layina is so different from her brother! She loved the bassinet and what I thought was going to be a short nap actually lasted for 4-5 hours straight!!! How good was that?

Khairaldin on the other hand, wasn't as easy as Layina. He suddenly had tummy ache and was restless. After putting Layina in the bassinet, I had a steward to look after her for awhile whilst I brought Khairaldin to the toilet. He had diarrhoea! Sigh. I did put diapers on him before we left for the airport, but being toilet trained, he couldn't 'do it' in the diapers. But Alhamdulillah, we only went for 2 toilet trips in 15minutes gap. After those 2 trips, he felt much better and fell asleep straight away! I was so glad. Since both of them were sleeping, I didn't waste anymore time and straight away 'joined' them to sleep. Alhamdulillah I managed to sleep for 2hrs straight. It was good!

By the time they woke up, we were already half way through our journey. We went for a few rounds around the aircraft, read a few books, played a few games and just made a mess on the floor! Thankfully Layina was already walking, saved me from having to carry here everywhere in the aircraft. We managed to catch some short naps. Layina wasn't awake that much. It was only for awhile that she was awake. Khairaldin was lucky as he got to just spend time with me :) Two hours before landing was a bit tough. Khairaldin kept asking what time we were gonna arrive and kept bugging about wanting to eat bread with chocolate spread from Nana's house! So I had to reason out with him until he really gets the idea that we are far away and there is no way he's getting his bread and choc spread in the plane. Hehehe

All in all, it was an interesting experience as it wasn't as how I expected it to be at all! I was prepared for the worse and Alhamdulillah, that was nowhere near my expectations. I am sure this breeze journey was from the numerous thoughts and du'as people sent to me! Alhamdulillah shukur! I believe that if we have a plan, we should tell your loved one about it so that they constantly du'a and remember you. JazakAllahu Khair, everbody!

Any tips or tricks? No really. I guess it was a rather "easy" journey on my side because I am with my children almost 24-7 therefore I know when they are restless or about to throw tantrums. If I was a working Mom, I don't think I would be able to take up this adventure. Basically, you really need to know your child when you're about to travel. Get them as comfortable as possible, InshaAllah everything will be great! :)) Personally to me, SUPER MOM are those working Mom's who would be brave enough to take such adventure seeing that they're rarely with their child during day time. But either way, mother instincts are the best!! :))

Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device

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