[Guest Post] Flying the Friendly Skies

by CMHines4 on November 27, 2013

Have you ever thought it funny how traveling has a way of uniting complete strangers? Despite the so-called Mommy Wars waging across the nation, motherhood can have a unifying effect, too. Heidi Smith Luedtke, personality psychologist, writer and author of Detachment Parenting: 33 Ways to Keep Your Cool When Kids Melt Down, explores this phenomenon. Heidi is a sought-after freelance writer, well-travelled military spouse and mom of two, who inspires parents with her no-nonsense, sanity-saving parenting advice and techniques.

 

*Don’t forget! This is the last week to enter the Mom to Mom Gratitude Gala & Giveaway. Comment on this post and you’ll automatically be entered into the drawing on December 2. For more ways to enter the drawing, click here.*

 

And without further ado, here’s Heidi!

 

Mom2MomGratitudeFlying the Friendly Skies

by Heidi Smith Luedtke

This Thanksgiving week I’ll be flying the friendly skies. And I’m not referring to the airline. Since I became a mom, I’ve come to see travel as an opportunity to be part of the Mom Community.  But you won’t hear that on your morning news program.

If you watch (or read) the news, you’re more likely to hear there’s a Mommy War on. We don’t agree about breastfeeding, co-sleeping, working, daycare and discipline. And sometimes we judge each other. Journalists are quick to jump on these disagreements and (I think) paint a more desperate picture than they should.

You see, in my experience, our disagreements are small in comparison to the profound sense of connection we share with each other as moms. After all, when it comes to labor, delivery and the day-in/day-out trials of motherhood, we’ve all “been there and done that.” There are things we know that only other mothers can understand.

I’ve seen this motherly bond in action at playgrounds, amusement parks, and (yes!) in subway stations and airport terminals.  In these places – where parents struggle to keep kids entertained, well-fed and reasonably rested – we Moms become one big, extended family.

I’ve shared hand sanitizer, snack foods, and Band-Aids for boo-boos. I’ve passed wet wipes to airsick toddlers and given diapers to parents who realized they ran out. I’ve offered reassuring smiles to moms pacing the airplane aisle with babies whose tiny ears just couldn’t cope with the altitude. And I’ve graciously accepted assistance from parents who offered to carry my double stroller, extra suitcase or Thomas the Tank Engine Carry-On up a flight of stairs or down the jet bridge.

I’m grateful for the opportunities I have to help other mothers and for the blessings I’ve received in return. Being part of a community brings out the best in all of us.

And so, as I head cross-country with two kids under 6, it’s a comfort to know the skies are friendly. Packed in the back of the plane – mostly in the middle seats – are a bunch of other mothers who’ll be happy to help me in any way they can. Because whether we breastfeed, co-sleep, homeschool or hire full-time nannies, we’re all in this together. And for that, I am truly grateful.

 

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Sue LeBreton November 27, 2013 at 2:59 pm

I agree that we are more likely to help each other than engage in the mommy wars. I was once travelling with a colicky baby and after walking her with up and down the until take off, the woman beside me asked all kind of questions like had I considered medicating her. I thought, oh no- I’m seated beside someone who doesn’t like babies. Turned out she was a paediatrician and was very curious about healthy babies as she mostly dealt with sick kids so we had a great chat on the flight as she interacted with me & baby.

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