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My actual sad suitcase.  The cute clothes in there? Not mine.  My baby's clothes.  I have a pair of underwear.

My actual sad suitcase. The cute clothes in there? Not mine. They are my adorable baby’s clothes. I managed to fit in one pair of clean underwear so I won’t smell too bad.

Tomorrow, we leave Los Angeles to see family on the East Coast.  This means we are flying… with a lap infant… again.  Why do we keep on doing this to ourselves?  Are we masochistic or just extremely dumb?  This will be Moira’s sixth round trip flight as a lap infant and the sixth trip I will be desperately requiring a huge glass of wine upon arrival.  Traveling on a plane with a lap baby ain’t fun – but I’ve already discussed that.

What I find amazing is that when you become a mommy, you stop packing for yourself.  When I traveled as a young, childless lass, I used to pack roughly twice as much clothing as my husband.  Now that I have my daughter, I pack some underwear, maybe a shirt or sweater depending on the weather, and a pair of jeans.  Sometimes I pack deodorant (read: “I NEVER pack deodorant.)  I’m disgusting now that I have a child.  On the plane, I used to have self respect and care what I wore.  Not now!  Now, I wear yoga pants, a top, a hoodie and ratty ass sneakers.  That’s it.

When you pack with a baby, you don’t care about what you look like.  You no longer obsess about fashion and what’s in; you obsess about having everything for the child.  Spoiler alert – you will ALWAYS forget something crucial no matter how many lists you wrote.  When you pack with a baby, although you’ll invariably forget something important like her favorite pacifier, you will remember TONS of things that you absolutely will not need.  This means, that while you used to have a full suitcase all to yourself, as a Mom, you will have roughly 1/8th of 1 percent of the suitcase to yourself.  You can maybe squeeze in a sock in your part of the bag – maybe.  Your vacation is no longer about you, Mommy, it’s about your darling little one.  Even using the word “vacation” is a misnomer – it’s more like a trip and this “trip” won’t leave you relaxed and rejuvenated like a vacay.  Nope!  You’ll be more tired when you get back home.

However, traveling with an infant is worth it for roughly two minutes of the flight when your cherished cherub nestles into your bosom.  So cute!  The rest of the time, you are trying to control an angry, screaming flight hazard.

So now I need to get back to packing.  I’m looking forward to the one sock I’ll be able to fit in my bag.  If my in-laws think I smell all trip long, it’s fine.  I’ll be stuck in the mountains of Virginia and nobody will care and, more importantly, I lost all self-respect a long time ago.

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