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Baby Redeye

2012 June 8
by Stanley Quan

My flight out of Albuquerque got delayed yesterday afternoon and I ended up taking the redeye home.

One of the last things I wanted to hear after a long day’s work and impending long flights home was that my flight was going to be delayed. Even worse, the delay would cause me to miss my connecting flight.

So I ended up on the redeye and when I boarded and got to my seat, saw a young dad with a tiny baby wrapped in a blanket in the seat next to me. In my mind, I was thinking how bad this combo was going to be: a very tired me + baby on board.

The dad and I exchanged friendly hellos and the flight started well enough, baby fast asleep. I nodded off as well.

Sure enough, mid-flight, the baby woke up and started crying pretty loudly and continuously. But I didn’t get upset.

I could see the dad trying so hard to appease his daughter, juggling a milk bottle in one hand and a pacifier in the other, all the while caressing her and supporting her head and neck. He was whispering comforting words to her, kissing her, just being an amazing dad. It was easy to see that there was so much love from him.

After we landed, the dad chatted me up and I found out that his baby girl was only 3 months old and he was on his way to surprise his mom at her 50th birthday. His original non-stop flight was delayed/cancelled and this was the first flight of three, with two more to go.

This was the first time I’ve ever sat next to a baby on a flight and I can honestly say that I’m glad I was there. Previously, I’ve always been annoyed by crying babies on flights. Seeing the dad’s love changed everything though.

I definitely didn’t get the snooze I wanted on that flight, but I did gain a some perspective.

What more can you ask for but people trying their best and love?


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