Yesterday I flew from Indiana to Colorado and then Colorado to Oregon. I flew with my four kids. One adult four kids...
Imagine that you have an hour and half once your plane lands until the next plane takes off. That sounds like enough time, right?
But, you need to get the motley crew dinner. And, you need to pee. Also, your second son is deathly allergic to peanuts so you don't want to try random airport food. You have to go to the food court.
First, you wait for your umbrella stroller to be brought up. It was gate checked. While you are waiting, you let your oldest son go to the bathroom. You really need to pee. The other 2 boys went to the bathroom on the first plane a total of 7 times. You make them wait.
Down the terminal you go, head turning, eyes darting back and forth between all three boys. You decide you H-A-T-E the moving walkways. They are made.for.boys. I mean, how can a boy under the age of 12 resist trying to walk backwards, run, stand, run, stand, walk fast (because walking really fast is not the same as running), dart in and out of other people, and stop directly in-front of someone walking fast? You have to navigate 2 of these moving pathways BEFORE you get to the elevator. After the kids fight over the elevator buttons... stop, okay, this will take forever if I recount every little moment...
Let's see, there are 4 more moving pathways before you get to the food court.
You gather your tribe and grab some grub. You scarf down food and slowly sip a coke (because you desperately need to pee and that's all you can think of as you drink). You explain as patiently as possible that you do not have to run to the gate (like on the trip 2 weeks ago) but you do need to get there as soon as you can because none of the seats are together.
It's an exhausting trip back, navigating those I'm-here-to-make-traveling-with-kids-frustrating sidewalks.
We make it safe and sound.
I tell the lady at the desk that I am traveling with 4 kids and none of us are seated together.
She says, "You've got to be kidding me."
The flight is over-booked.
Your 5 year old exclaims, "I have to POOP!"
You make him wait.
The kids push on each other.
It is time for the flight to board.
The 3 year old screams.
Passengers are called to desk.
She begins to deal with other passengers about separate issues.
You decide that the desperate 5 year old cannot wait any more.
You tell the clerk that one of the kids has to go to the bathroom.
There isn't a family bathroom on that part of the terminal.
You make your 7 year old go with the 5 year old (and you wonder how long it will take the boy to wipe).
You decide it would be a good time to change the 3 year old.
You discover that it would have been a good time quite awhile ago.
She is soaked.
You make the 9 year old stand with all of the stuff and you take the three year old in to be changed.
You push past the ladies standing in line and make it to the far corner to change your daughter.
You are in the bathroom. You are dying to pee but you cannot.
There's no time.
The kids are scattered and the plane should be boarding.
You gather the over-tired kids and head back to the gate. A sweet lady sitting near the desk (that had been staring at your crew earlier) tells you that the clerk has been calling for you.
You get seat assignments.
Your 5 year old starts crying (I mean, melting: red-faced, slumped on the floor crying) that he doesn't get a window seat this time.
You force a smile and nod as someone asks, "Oh my, are you are flying with 4 under the age of 12?"
You board the plane, get the kids in their seats, switch two of the kids, buckle in, and pee in your pants.