When Others Think Your Kid Behaved Better Than You Thought

2 years, 8 months.

Dear Jack,

All Mommy and I really could do was just embrace ourselves and expect for the worst, as we boarded the plane yesterday morning from Nashville. It was your first time with your own seat on a plane (and that we’ve had to pay for one for you) and we didn’t know if that would be better or worse than you sitting in Mommy’s lap like the other two times we’ve flown to California.

The 90 minute flight to Minneapolis was fine, being that we all had to wake up at 3:30 AM to get to the airport in time. You were in a daze.

And during the one hour layover in Minneapolis, you were fine, because they offered free use of tablets, which you took advantage of by watching clips on YouTube of Jeeps plowing through the mud.

But by the 2nd half of the 3 and a half hour flight to San Francisco, you had plenty of energy to release… in the form of kicking the seats of the people in front of us.

I immediately (!) corrected that- by letting you kicking my legs instead.

It was the best idea I could come up with.

Trying to discipline an overtired, energetic, and restless toddler on a plane is a tricky thing.

After all, everyone was watching. And I just simply wanted to subdue you and most importantly, not make a scene.

Mommy was able to tone you down a little bit by pulling out crayons and coloring books for you.

About that time, the man sitting across the aisle from me, a friendly Wisconsin resident named Tom Potter and his wife let you borrow a couple of their grandson’s books… ones that you’ve never read, like Dr. Seuss’s Hop on Pop.

Soon after the plane landed, Tom and his wife, as well as the lady sitting next to them, all individually commented on how well-behaved you were.

My reaction was something like this: “Ha ha! Oh? Really?.. Um, thanks!”

I had prepared for a a meltdown, but fortunately, it never happened. This was a situation where less was more.

It was best to not try to discipline you for being an overtired, energetic, and restless little boy. You just needed a distraction.

In reality, you weren’t the token brat on the plane that annoys everybody. What a relief!

Having those people tell me that you were well-behaved made me feel really good.

As for the hour and 50 minute drive from San Francisco to Sacramento, you fell hard asleep about 10 minutes into the ride.

 

Love,

Daddy

 

 

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