Just over a year ago, about one week before I found out I was expecting our first child, my husband was offered the opportunity to relocate to Helsinki, Finland for his job. Of course we accepted, not knowing that with one thing and another, we would actually end up moving when our son was four months old.
After all the packing, sorting, scheduling, and general preparation, we were on our way. We took our first flight out of our tiny, Midwestern airport to Detroit, where Little Man had an absolute breakdown just as we were sitting down to lunch. After half an hour of walking him around, handing him to a very helpful waitress, then finally to the husband, he passed out. Luckily, he then proceeded to sleep until our flight to Amsterdam was ready to take off.
If anyone tells you that traveling with a newborn is “easy”, do us all a favor and whack them upside the head. I don’t know for sure, but I’m told it’s easy in comparison to traveling with a toddler. Until you have a toddler to travel with, however, a newborn is no walk in the park. We were able to procure the bassinet seats, which was nice, if only for the storage. I think Little Man slept in the bassinet for all of thirty minutes during the six hour and fifty-four minute flight. He only had one melt down, which consisted of about forty-five minutes of screaming until husband and I figured out that Little Man hadn’t eaten in a while. Oops. The joys of overseas traveling, I guess.
From Amsterdam, we flew into Helsinki; a quick two and a half hour flight, during which, I had the joy of changing two diapers, one right after the other. The joy in this came when half the plane decided to use the lavs at the same time. Just as I returned to my seat (the first time), I heard the telltale squelch that meant Little Man needed another change. Que the other half of the plane needing to pee, and we were once again stuck in the back galley. At least the flight attendant was nice enough to make me coffee.
We landed in Helsinki around 3:30 in the afternoon, where we proceeded to baggage claim to wrangle our seven (yes, SEVEN) checked items. (We were, after all moving our lives and baby across the world for four years. That being said, I’m still amazed that we checked seven bags.) But we made it! We were in Helsinki! Let the fun begin!