Thursday, July 8, 2010

Scenes from an Airport, Part 2 (or, Read This to Feel Like a Better Mother)

I pushed Parker into the airport in The Stroller. I had a giant bag flung over my shoulder. I had to get upstairs in order to begin The Security Process and get to our gate. My eyes scanned the area for an elevator sign, a recessed hallway of elevators, anything that looked like an elevator area.

All I could see were restroom signs and Escalators.

I’m sure if I had tried to look harder and pushed The Stroller around and around I would have found the secret, hard-to-find elevator for families and old women. But, no. Stupidly, I had a surge of confidence in my Stroller/Escalator abilities.

I have seen people take their children up escalators in a stroller before. It’s not like these are superhumans, and I am not. “I can do that too!” I thought.

So, we got on, and there I was, standing next to The Stroller and holding the back wheels up and looking quite proud of my expert-traveling capabilities and general supreme parenting skilz.

But anytime you actually start thinking that Supermom can exist, that idea will knock you on your ass. Literally.

We got to the top of the escalator and I planned to just push Parker right onto the ground and keep going. There is a Lip that exists at the top of the Escalator, correct? A small thing, this Lip, but mighty enough to instigate death or severe injury.

It all happened in a mad instant, but if it had occurred in slow motion, this is what it looked like.

The Stroller tire hit the Lip, and the force of it knocked The Stroller forward with force and gusto onto the rotating Escalator steps. Parker was face down, facing his enemy close-up, while still strapped into the stroller.

Danger, metal, hell and tarnation filled my mind. I started screaming. Parker was screaming. My instinct was to grab Parker and get him out of The Stroller, but try as I might, I could not get him unstuck, and a mess of stroller and toddler kept rotating on top of the moving Escalator stairs! So, I just pushed on the entire Stroller/Toddler screaming mess as hard as I could and got if off of the rotating chaos. I grabbed Parker out of the stroller and held him close – he was crying and screaming but there were no apparent injuries (amazingly enough).

A group of stewardesses and people started approaching – “Is he alright?!” “Is everything ok?!” “Oh my gawd!”

I looked around. The top of the Escalator spit us out right in front of the food court. I saw families, eating their McDonald’s with their mouths literally hanging open and staring at me.

There was nothing more for me to do, but put my poor, poor (yet resilient) bub into the stroller, hold my head high past the food court people, and keep going. Parker had quieted down, and we had our next hurdle to jump: Security.

Next up, we encountered loud, yelling Security woman. “Why is he in a stroller?! He is a big boy!!”

I was thinking, “Shut UP! Don’t give him any ideas, you loud annoying person who thinks you know what is best! You are not the mother of MY little maniac!” This woman had not seen Parker wriggle out of the stroller earlier and lay in the street. She has not seen him run through the aisles of Target (like they’re jet ways), nor bounce over and over in a booth when un-contained in a high chair. In high stress situations (public), my bub needs straps and a confined space.

I simply said, “It is a containment issue.”

The loud, yelling Security woman did not understand the word ‘containment,’ and just kept shouting about, “You should be walking by your mommy, helping her out, you’re a big boy, why are you in a stroller?!”

(My boy is two. TWO. What two-year-olds WALK NEXT TO their mommy in exciting public places, I beg of you?! Ok, do not answer that. If your two-year-old does that, I don’t want to know.)

Eventually, we made it through security, and when our tubs full of shoes, jackets, bags, and liquids (and, yes, The Stroller) came out the other side, Parker began frantically kissing me all over my face in joy.

This made it all better. I realized, we are in this together! He does not think I have tried to kill him multiple times today! To him, I had SAVED him multiple times! I WAS mother extraordinaire! Some say the best you can do is handle strife with grace. We did not really handle it with grace (more like bulls in a China shop or chickens with our heads cut off), but once the scary parts were over, we carried on in the manner of, “I meant to do that, he he,” or “Whatever!”

Parker and me, we can do anything. Parker and me, we’re like peas and carrots.

(And, The Stroller? We had a nice bonfire the other night, friggin’ ass stroller is gone.)


Jessica @ Barefoot by the Sea said...

Ok! You win...your stroller story was worse than my experience, you poor thing. That sounds horrific. I love how you tell it though - the nosy, McDonald eating people - nobody offering help though (am I right?) Oh and my Sydney, who turned 2 last week is still in a stroller, all 18 pounds of her and YES, IT'S A CONTAINMENT ISSUE!!!! As well as a SANITY issue! Thanks for following!

Shell said...

TWO??? Of course he should still be in a stroller. In places like that I make my 2 year-old AND my 4 year-old ride in the double stroller!

LOL @ your bonfire comment. Die, stupid stroller.

Mrs Woog said...

Oh the joy! I loved reading this post. It had everything- danger, fatass McDonald eating families, idiot bit players, triumph. LOVED IT. Please do more 2 part series as they work for you. LOVED xo

Jen said...

I have to agree with Shell, two year olds belong in a stroller. Shoot, my 5 year old is sometimes still in a stroller. Stupids security.

Glad it all ended well.

Babes Mami said...

Seriously? Security airport lady! WTF, get your own baby and then watch what happens!

Burn stroller burn!

I thought this was going to turn to blood at one point but so glad it didn't!

Mommy's Sippy Cup said...

LOL at the containment issue comment. And he layed in the street. Oh dear Lord. I would have been in a panic nightmare mess of a state of mind!

But go on with your bad self hero mom :)

Mia said...

My 2 yr old son is a constant containment issue. He long ago figured out how to get out of ANY strap. I have been working on teaching him to stay by mama at target rather than him constantly trying to climb out of the cart. For awhile I was putting him in the big basket but he started trying to climb out of that too. When he could successfully get a leg over and out, I gave up. You should see the looks I get each time I go to Target.

Oddyoddyo13 said...

And I thought I had escalator problems.

Cheryl said...

Okay, what? That security woman clearly had something wrong with her. What does she even care?

Did you roast marshmallows over that bonfire? You could've invited the security woman..

WhisperingWriter said...

Ack, you poor thing. :(

Natalie is 3 and she sits in a stroller. I imagine some people are all, "She's too old!" but I don't care.

Annie @ astonesthrowfrominsanity said...

Totally, totally, understand the containment issue. Also, I have also bonfired an uncooperative stroller. Seriously. I have. :)

"Queen" Vic said...

Wow! That was quite the tale!

Thanks for stopping by my SITS Potluck Post, today!

BPOTW said...

Such a fun post! Thanks for the giggles.

Brenda said...

Jaysus! You poor Mama. You want some of my vodka rocks?; )

Marketing Gurl said...

HILARIOUS! Did I already tell you how much I love the new it...also great award posts. I remember when I just found you! Don't you love blogging!

Laura said...

I guess you both were a little terrified. I have managed to push a stroller on the escalor without any problems...thank goodness.

Stopping by from SITS! Thanks for visiting my blog!

citymouse said...

I'm sorry Kristy, but this is freaking hilarious! I hope now that you've survived it you can laugh too. I promise you when your little man is much older it will be one of those tales that gets told and kinda grows with the years. (And, for sure, you will laugh then.)

By the way, sweet kisses after after a mess of a day always makes it better!

Tenille said...

Ooh I cringed when you mentioned tacking the escalator with a stroller, that is something I will avoid at all possible costs. The world just isn't designed for people on wheels. Airport security = massively overblown sense of self importance. There's one guy at Sydney airport who wears white gloves to tell people which line to queue in. It makes me laugh every time.

Lori @ RRSAHM said...

Haha oh too funny!! Toddlers in public are like dangerous weapons ;) I will confess mine does walk to mummy, but only because I've got the Bump as well,as double strollers are like driving a limo or something ;)

Angie said...

OMG! Escalator lips scare the s**t out of me! I won't even do them in flip flops much less with strollers! You are a brave super mommy! Glad y'all are ok!!

Tammi @ My Organized Chaos said...

Oh wow! We had a similar incident, the airport told me that the elevators were for wheelchairs only and I had to go up the escalator. Well, the double stroller {Twins} is too wide for the escalator....

Can you picture me trying to hold 2 one year olds, 2 bags of luggage and a folded up double stroller - all the while going up the escalator...!!!!



kathryn said...

DAMN that stroller! I'm glad it met it's ultimate demise.

I had a guy once look at me as I struggled with the 3 boys in the airport and he said, "SMILE! What have you got to be sad about?"

I wanted to CLOCK him.

Zeemaid said...

I'm with you... O only recently was let out of the stroller only because we now live on a less busy street and he knows if he doesn't behave he has to hold my hand all the way home (the horror) Of course 2 year olds need containment. It's a rare child that walks nice and sweetly by your side

Renee said...

OK, this was a funny post. But the security woman is IN.SANE! TWO??? Even if he can walk next to you calmly, their little legs get tired quickly and then they want to be carried. And that's no fun in an airport or mall or anywhere!


Some people!

Glad he survived certain death, though. :-)

chele said...

You did it!! And didn't the kisses just make everything alright? Sons are the best.

Hmmmm, handling strife with grace. I'll have to try that.

Glen said...

Get a new Stroller !! My boy is eight and there are times that I wish I could strap him into a push chair and then walk up and down for five minutes until he goes to sleep! Oh those were the days!

Krista said...

It sounds like you're lucky everyone arrived alive! I can relate though! I have that sense of relief every day when I go to bed... I didn't crash and burn... today.... lol. It could happen at any time though.

I'm so glad you've got such a great sense of humour; that was fun to read!

Kristi {at} Live and Love...Out Loud said...

I swear those security officers are paid big fat bonuses for driving mothers with babies nuts in the airport. I always get stopped for the RANDOM security check. Always. Never freaking fails. Me and all four kids, mind you. As for having a two year old in a stroller, it's a necessity! She has no clue what she's talking about. See previous comment about security officer bonuses. lol Oh and your escalator incident...scary stuff! I once rescued an old man who tripped on the lip of the escalator and fell right at the edge. The escalator continued to go and the revolving metal steps were cutting him. Those things can be really scary. I'm glad Parker made it out okay.
And finally... You're not a bad mom. :) Thanks for stopping by Kristy. Hope the next trek through the airport goes smoother. Have a great day.

Kristi, Live and Love...Out Loud

LambAround said...

LOL! This sounds like the Albuquerque airport. Only here would a security guard not understand the word containment.

Young Wife said...

The escalator situation must have been so frightening! Security guards at airports can be so stupid.

Writing Without Periods! said...

What a story!! Happy Tuesday.

Jessica Anne said...

I am laughing so hard right now (sorry, but it is funny). I can just imagine the food court people! And I confine my 2 year old at all costs. Duct tape if needed.

Anonymous said...

great story! Since the Stroller is The Stroller, I assume there are other stories?

I understand confinment! My son is 6 but overstimulating places, like Target or really anywhere, he does better in the cart. And people can stare and I dare them to say anything to me. LOL So to the dumb security lady, you were very nice. I would have said, he is TWO! And if you would like to chase him all over this airport, be my guest. but I'm evil like that. Found you on Red Dress Club!

Lindsey said...

Escalators are terrifying. I love that he was kissing you all over. The perspective of kids never ceases to put me in a state of awe.

Angelia Sims said...

Grace with strife. So true. You did well and that was extraordinary! You deserved every kiss you got. What a sweet little boy.

The Empress said...

you poor thing, as if you weren't frightened

cristina said...

how scary the escalator incident, but you are hilarious.

Anonymous said...

Visiting from TRDC. How scary! Escalators have always freaked me out. Freakin' scary death traps you have to pray your shoelace doesn't come undone when your on one. I hate them! I'm so glad you both made it out ok. This was very well written and a captivating read. Well done!

Missy@Wonder, Friend said...

Visiting from your TRDC link. That escalator accident must have been terrifying. So glad you were both okay!

And the security person? Nut job.

Traveling with kids is always an adventure. Thanks for writing your story!

Life In A Pink Fibro said...

Great story. My closest experience was when we had Mr6, then two, in a stroller, wandering the cobbled streets of Europe (crazed parents that we were, but that's a different story). My hubby never strapped him in properly - 'he'll be fine' was his attitude. So we're on the cobbles, we hit a 'lip' and wham, Mr2 was face first on the stones. Nice black eye for us to take back home with us. But you still win with your escalator.

Stefanie said...

OK, THIS was hysterical, and son was pushed in a stroller through Sea World last summer, and he was 6. Love when outsiders think they know you and your kids the best. whatev.

Broot said...

Loved it. :) Could imagine each bit clearly! :)

Anonymous said...

Ok, that security woman? She needed to be bitch slapped! Are kidding me?? I would have had a fit. A 2 year old ABSOLUTELY needs to be in a stroller. That age, 2-3, is when they're the hardest to handle in a store or pretty much any public place and especially the airport!

Nice way to power through. And happy SITS Day! :-)

alison said...

gotta love unsolicited parenting advice from total strangers...i.e. people you would not allow withing 3 feet of your child under normal circumstances...and the escalator thing? scary stuff...when my kidlets were small and strapped in i routinely loaded them onto those rolling i wouldn't even try...too many horror stories...over from sits to say hello and have a wonderful day.


stuff and nonsense

Mommy Shorts said...

I was at the airport recently with my 14 month old and a guy called her spoiled and offered to throw out her pacifier for me. I wanted to punch him.

Airports are horrific with children. I's amazing any moms make it out alive. Kudos to you!

And Happy SITs Day!

Kristi said...

What a great story! You sound like a great mom and I love how you find the humor in the chaotic moments of life.

Marie said...

I love how you answered the security guard, “It is a containment issue", brilliant! :)

Morgan said...

Oh .... airports ... their own little weird worlds where nothing goes quite right. Way hang in there in the face of mean escalators!

Enjoy your SITS day! :)

Anonymous said...

I agree with Morgan. Nothing goes right in airports. NOTHING. :) But that's a cute story to remember someday.

Happy SITS day!

Marilenn @ TheStudioAlcantara.Com said...

Airports are terrible! But I totally enjoyed reading your post! I can't wait to be a mom someday and make memories :D Even ones such as these :D

Tiffany said...

My youngest is old enough that I finally got to retire it. Or toss it because the kids had destroy it pushing each other around in it. In the backyard. Did I mention one of them is 9? Yeah.

Anyway!! I'm grateful I've never had to do the whole toddler/stroller combo. And reading this, I now know that God loves me above all others!

Deborah said...

Wow, that sounds like an exciting day. It reminds me of my trip to the airport with my two kids and Mom in Law, (who is sight challenged.) My little one refused to get on the escalator, so the two of us took the elevator while my son and Mom in law, who had already gotten on the escalator, disappeared from sight. Panic much? I'll take a glass with you!

Laura said...

I've done the stroller on the escalator thing many times with my two girls & luckily I had no problems. But like you, there is no way I would have taken them into a public place (especially an airport) unless they were in a stroller or I had one of those leash thingies. (They are now 21 & 15, so I don't have that problem anymore.)

Happy SITS Day!

CK said...

Oh my goodness! I totally understand the "containment" issue! I can't believe the security guard wanted him to walk beside you. Kudos getting through the airport successfully, though!!!!

Kristi said...

I love your story. Traveling with children is horrendous! I would have wanted to shove that plastic tub of shoes and such right in the security woman's mouth. Some people just have no clue - and they are usually the ones without children.

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