It has been about four years since I’ve traveled without my kids, so heading to Florida last month was bittersweet. I was sad to leave my little family behind, especially since it is the first time I’d been away from Miss Madelyn and only the third time I’d been away from my little guy. On the plus side, it was a nice change of pace to only have to worry about myself. Here are a few things I realized from traveling alone again.
Security is a breeze without kids. I normally have milk, bags of toys, snacks, lollipops and at least three coloring books with me. That is in addition to my laptop, changes of clothes, car seats, a stroller, diapers, wipes and my own reading material (because even though I know I will never have time to read for pleasure, I hold out hope and bring something along anyway). That is a long way of saying I am THAT person—the one you try not to get behind in the security line. This time, I just had to whip out my laptop and slip off my shoes (and no one else’s). I did have to go through the full-body scanner at the airport, which I really don’t like, but then again, after nursing Madelyn for the past nine months, I’ve probably shown more inadvertently when my little lady flipped off my nursing cover.
The lavatories on airplanes suddenly seemed larger. The last time I flew I navigated the lavatory with Evan by my side and Madelyn strapped on my front in the Baby Bjorn. It was tight. Really tight.
The odds of getting upgraded to first class are much greater when traveling solo. Somehow I found myself in first class on the first leg of my trip. That definitely would not have happened with a preschooler and infant in tow. I’m not quite sure how it happened and, even as I was sipping my pre-takeoff Diet Coke, I kept expecting someone to direct me back to coach. No one did and I loved every minute of my first-class adventure. Unfortunately I was back in coach with the masses on my way home, but it was nice while it lasted.
Looking out the window was not nearly as much fun. As I looked down on the clouds, I suddenly longed for my little guy to be sitting on my lap. His little face would have lit up when he realized we were above the clouds. He would have asked questions and soaked it all in. As we neared the ground, he would have pointed out the houses, trees and swimming pools that all look so pristine from the air. I love seeing the world through his eyes and missed having him with me. Luckily, we’re heading back next month for a family vacation and I can’t wait to see my guy’s reaction when he gets to meet Mickey in person and check out the superheroes at Universal Studios.