As anyone who has undertaken a long journey with a child knows all too well, it can be a very stressful experience.
From keeping them entertained to dealing with the reaction from fellow passengers if your little one decides to throw a tantrum, it’s definitely not for the faint-hearted!
Sometimes though, a little consideration from others can make all the difference.
An anonymous mother took to the Love What Matters forum recently to share a story about a lovely experience she had while taking her young child on a mammoth 5,000 mile journey to visit her family.
The woman’s husband had been deployed by the army and while she was looking forward to the company of her nearest and dearest, she was dreading the trip.
“The isolation of being in a new area without any support consumed me and I finally agreed, much to my parents’ delight, to come out for a prolonged visit. My biggest apprehension was making such a long trip. With a toddler. By myself.
“I prepared well, relying on prior experience. Of course none of that mattered, and deep down, I knew it. I had such anxiety about her airborne tantrums. Once before, I had had a very rude man tell me to ‘shut that child up before I do’ when my very tired infant would not stop crying. I choked back tears as I ignored his comment and continued to try to soothe my baby. It had traumatised me a bit and I vowed to never fly again after that.”
While the woman’s flight started well, her little one soon became restless and began hysterically crying, despite her efforts to soothe her.
While she had been nervous about the reaction of the passenger she was sitting next to, there was a lovely surprise in store.
“My heart raced as I tried to ignore any irritated stares and eye rolls and focused on soothing her.
But then the man sitting next to us did something I didn’t expect. He told me with a smile, ‘You’re doing great, mom.’ He then suggested I switch seats with my daughter so that he could sit next to her. I agreed.
“Then he pulled out his iPad to show her pictures of his grandchildren. He opened a game and showed her how to play it. He talked with me about his life and asked me about mine. He helped occupy my daughter and soothed her when she fussed. He was so patient and loving. Before I knew it, the six hour flight was coming to an end. We had survived. And the man helped me with my bags as I carried her off the plane.”
The mother was totally overcome by the gesture of kindness and decided to share the story to highlight the impact that the stranger’s actions had on her situation.
“He didn’t judge me. He didn’t grow irritated when the screams and crying started. He didn’t say something rude to me in a moment of irritability. He gracefully sacrificed his time and energy to help a distressed mother and child. He was understanding. He made our flight, not just bearable, but pleasant. I often think of him all these years later. It was the kindness of a stranger that got us through that day and I will always be thankful for him.”
Such a lovely story!
via Huffington Post