Once upon a time there was a cute little couple that lived in Nashville. Every winter they would travel to both California and Oklahoma to visit their families for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. They would spend days packing for the different climates, end up with huge bags full of unnecessary clothing items, shoes, etc. They would bitch about being delayed in airports and dealing with the craze of holiday travelers they encountered. They would peacefully sit at a bar and watch with laughter all the stupid hacks that would travel with children – swearing that would NEVER be them…ever. And then they would arrive at their destination with a simple carry on and single suitcase. They lived happ-RECORD SCREETCH – ya, that shit is OVER.
These days those lovely travel times are a distant memory. I chuckle when I think about how annoyed I was with holiday travel, how much of a burden it seemed. If only my today self could go back and throw a dirty diaper at my previous self and shout “Enjoy this fucking time, Bitch – it’s gonna be hell in a few years”. In reality – today self is the bitch, most likely because she hasn’t slept in 5 years and has to travel with kids.
As I write this, I am sitting in a "seat" that must have been engineered with three-year old child measurement specs, because there is more legroom in the trunk of a Miata than there is in this fucking thing. I am in what would be a third row, if there was a row at all. But there is no row, no no, the rest of the minivan is chock full with a ton shit that is required to fucking travel with two kids. My kids have it good, they get the cozy second row. Hubs and his brother have it best, they can leisurely drive up front with cushy ass seats, radio and all the conveniences of home. I, on the other hand, tighten my motion sickness bands to keep myself from puking from the TERRIBLE body roll that happens in the back of a car with too long of a wheelbase.
Now, if you don’t have kids, just stop reading because there is no fucking way you could ever comprehend what goes into traveling with rugrats. It’s unbelievable. In fact, my brother-in-law had the audacity to say “Wow, you have more stuff in that room than I have in the whole house”. I almost fucking drop-kicked him. You’re right asshole, get off your Captain Obvious ass and help us move this shit!
In case you haven’t had to do this yet, here are a couple thoughts on your packing list. Please note this is not exhaustive, but just some things to remember.
Stock it with beer on one tap, and vodka tonic on the other. That way whichever parent isn’t driving and has to take care of the kids in the back can get good and buzzed. Because my last piece of advice is this – when traveling with kids, pack your adult beverage of choice and some Xanax - it is literally the only way you will survive. Don't feel guilty, just realize that a Happy Mom means a Happy Family. It's ok...you are awesome for even attempting to travel with kids. If you succeed, you are a fucking Rock Star. And I never met a single Rock Star that didn't have booze and happy pills. Case closed.
Happy Holidays and best wishes to all of you that, like me, are REQUIRED to travel. I salute you - remember you are awesome - and I'll see you at the hotel bar at 10:00 pm begging the attendant to just give you a cup of ice because you brought your own beverage. Happy Trails.
Foul mouthed, outspoken and pretty much an eternal realist.