Monday, December 21, 2009

Flying with twins....

Our cross country flight with two 7 month babies went surprisingly well. We made it, the babies made it, and I don't think we annoyed anyone too much during our flights. What we did learn however was how incredibly awkward and difficult it is to maneuver through an airport, with luggage, carry-ons and babies.

Our day started at 2:30am and the babies are pretty well natured at that early hour. A friend drove us, and our million pieces of luggage to the airport an hour away (babies have so much crap). She helped us into the airport and then we proceeded to wait in the longest line ever to check-in. Already things were complicated. Our double snap in go while handy does not really handle that well, especially one handed and Marcus and I awkwardly tried to manage all of belonging and the babies as we moved through the line.

After checking our luggage I realized our first mistake. Too many carry-ons. I knew that we had too many but I like to be prepared. When flying during the winter months, especially when connecting through Chicago we wanted to be prepared for any possible delays. Last year it took us 23 hours to get home. So, I wanted to have enough bottles, formula, diapers, clothes etc. to last the babies should we have the bad luck of a million delays. This resulted in a diaper bag and small rolling suitcase, plus my backpack with my laptop, books etc. since my semester was not yet over. So yeah, too many carry-ons.

The carry-ons became an issue at the gate when we forfeited our stroller and struggled to walk down the narrow aisle of the plane with the babies car-seats (which do not really fit) and our bags. I literally hit every single person in an aisle seat as I awkwardly staggered down the aisle, and rather than anyone offering assistance everyone just looked at us. As Mark stood in the aisle helplessly and I said, "Sorry, sorry, sorry" as I made my way down. Then I had to leave Emerson, in her carseat, and go back and help Marcus with the bag so he could bring Eli down.

The other thing I learned is that when you're traveling with two babies people have a tendency to over share. I learned the entire life story of at least three people on our way here, all the while trying to feed/calm/ the babies.

Overall, the babies did great on the flight and during our lay-over. Emerson had a bit of a meltdown on our second flight but she eventually calmed down.

All was well until we landed at our final destination, we struggled to leave the plane and retrieve our stroller from the gate only to learn that they had lost the wheel. Leaving us stranded with two car-seats, a broken stroller and far too much carry baggage. And nobody cared, except a really kind pilot who went back to look for our wheel, and the offered to try and help us get our babies and belongings down to the baggage claim area.

The airline was completely unsympathetic about our plight, and clearly had no concept of some of the difficulties with twins. As the woman said, "We're not responsible and you're here and it's snowing what do you need the stroller for?" um... everything. We literally can't go anywhere without our stroller. We take it grocery shopping, we often take it to the doctors, we take it any time we have to the leave the house with both babies.

I calmly tried to explain to her that the stroller was not merely used to take the babies for walks but that it was a physical impossibility for us to navigate an airport without having somewhere to put both babies. (The car-seats and babies are heavy).

We were able to call the maker of our stroller so hopefully we'll have a replacement wheel before we have to travel home. Overall, it could have been worse. I'm glad it's over and I'm not really looking forward to doing it all over again in a few weeks.

(Oh, and changing babies on a plane is ridiculous).


JustaKidAtHeart said...

I hope you get a wheel soon. That really sucks that they couldnt find it and didnt care. I am glad you made the trip safely.

~Jess said...

I'd be aggravated too...what does it matter whether you need the stroller or not...they lost the wheel, they should find it or accommodate you. Hopefully the new wheel shows up fast. Glad it went well though.

Christi said...

I flew once alone with 1 11 month old...not fun. They lost my CAR SEAT...I was livid.

I had planned on waiting till 6 months adjusted too, but he has shifted into a I'm not eating phase. As you can see by the vid he is sucking the's basically milk with a touch oatmeal. He has up and down days, I only try once a day. I wanted him to try it while I am off for Christmas break..

Little Wonders said...

You know what's funny, Sadie? Your account of flying with them sounds complicated and extremely exhausting - because it is! But we MoMs think it went pretty well - because such is our life! Hope you enjoy your time back home ... and Merry Christmas!

katy said...

what an ordeal!! I would be lost without my stroller. Hope you get a replacement soon!