Traveling: New moms and “not-so-new” moms

I have become that slightly creepy lady who makes funny faces at other people’s babies and engages in conversation with every baby-sling-wearing, pram-pushing person. I suppose that motherhood, or parenthood for that matter, bonds you indirectly with every other person who’s also been blessed with little ones. I offer to hold babies while moms traveling alone with their newborns go to the loo on board planes and have extra nappies and wet wipes in my bag just in case, even when daddy is baby-sitting our son and I’m on my own.

Travel baby1

You see, there’s something so humbling about being a new parent, which makes you feel super vulnerable. I remember traveling in Italy a few weeks back. I’d miscalculated how many nappies I’d need in a space of 8 hours. I’d removed my boy’s soiled nappy in a restaurant (not many places have a safe, comfortable nappy changing station) and was faced with the choice of leaving him without a nappy (a BIG chance to take after he’d just eaten!) or asking a stranger for a nappy.

Travel baby

A kind Russian lady who spoke no English was sitting at the next table and noticing my predicament, passed me two nappies and explained in very broken English that she had also forgotten nappies the previous day and an Italian stranger had helped her out. Thank God for the Mommy Network!


Share your story below on traveling with a baby or just leave a comment on motherhood (or fatherhood) below and stand a chance to win a designer fragrance worth approximately R1000!

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16 Comments

  1. Fri, 26 September 2014
    Reply

    I travelled quite a bit with very young children and it always amazed me how many nappies my girls went through on an 8 hour flight. I learned the hard way and eventually my carry on luggage was basically a nappie bag on steroids. 🙂

  2. Fri, 26 September 2014
    Reply

    That’s so heartwarming, being a mommy crosses language barriers, culture barriers, financial barrier and any other barriers, we are all the same, just trying to do the best we can for our little ones 🙂 I was once claiming UIF with little one in tow, i never realised how long i would have to wait, being a monday morning everyone went to collect their job cards for the week. My little one started getting restless, and had finished his bottle, a lasy sitting next to me, also with baby in tow, offered me a bottle of valpre to fill his bottle. This lady was waaaaay below the bread line, and still had the heart to give me all she had. Mommy’s unite 🙂

  3. Meagan
    Fri, 26 September 2014
    Reply

    I’m not a mom myself, but my sister recently had a baby.

    It is a really funny thing, and so true… Once you have a baby everything changes. People start up conversations just seeing that you have a baby.

    My sister drove to Cape Town from Grahamstown, stopped for a hour in Knysna in the same predicament. Luckily for them they stopped by a supermarket and manager to buy some nappies.

    Love the baby blog you have, Love your work!

  4. Noni
    Fri, 26 September 2014
    Reply

    Bad day at work , everything was just hectic. Late deliveries , upset customers and Irate manager. Drove home in hectic traffic all I could do to motivate myself was imagine the face of my 7month old. Got home only to find …no water!!!!!!!!! Poor baby will have no bottle(Luckily I had stored some in a flask for during the day) Baby has not bathed and mommy will be without her chamomile tea this evening. Then God send an angel, a friend who stays in the same hood has a 10 month old and she had collected water for us and came to drop it off. Eternally grateful for Mommy network we have. I will probably share the perfume with her 🙂

  5. Natasha
    Fri, 26 September 2014
    Reply

    That’s just the sweetest thing:)
    It’s Amazing how being a mommy can change your perspective on life and feeling the pain and joy of other moms. Although Motherhood comes with challenges, like many other things, its the Best feeling and honour in the world, being called somebody’s ‘mom’ <3

  6. Fri, 26 September 2014
    Reply

    Thank you for sharing this post Jo-Anne. It just goes to show that no matter our colour, creed, shape or size.. we can change the world with KINDNESS! Your post once again, reminds me that we all need each other even in the simplest of way’s… BIG UP to the Russian Mommy who helped you out 😉

  7. Simone Scorgie
    Fri, 26 September 2014
    Reply

    Yes, being a “new” mom has made the world a different place. People greet, play, pull faces, offer to hold and just are much more friendly when you holding a bright eyed “googlly gum” on your hip. I first travelled when my son was 5 months, on the way to CT people amuzed him all the way there until he fell asleep but on the way back I had the time of my life trying to burst an air bubble in his flu stricken ears. The flight crew were so inexperienced and young and probably didn’t have any kids of their own. Needless to say I learnt a very valuable lesson about flying and babies lol. Anyway loving the blog keep it up!

  8. shaheeda loofer
    Fri, 26 September 2014
    Reply

    Only another mother will know that mommies always put their babies first. .and their is no shame in the mommy network…enjoy the cuddles.giggles and mental conversations

  9. Cindy-Lee
    Mon, 29 September 2014
    Reply

    When my husband and I got back from holiday with our baby, random foreigners at the airport thought Lulu was so cute they asked to take pictures with her to take home with them. I couldn’t stop laughing.

  10. Candice
    Mon, 29 September 2014
    Reply

    I’m a first-time mom to a 7-week-old boy. I really do appreciate you sharing all these stories on yor blog. We’re traveling by car to family in the Eastern Cape in December… 11-hour drive or so. I already want to panic just thinking about it. But your stories about traveling with your baby puts me at ease… And also reminds me what not to forget… Like enough nappies 🙂

  11. Chandre Abrahams
    Tue, 30 September 2014
    Reply

    Jo-Ann i love how real you are, some moms (myself included) would not always mention our mishaps, i have had a few lol makes me feel at ease to talk about it knowing i am def not the only one 🙂

  12. Catherine Zubaida
    Wed, 01 October 2014
    Reply

    Travelling with a baby is always not an easy task. I remember when I had just started taking my baby to day care, she was about 5 months old. She was very well behaved in the mornings on the way to drop her off, very calm and relaxed but some afternoon trips home things didn’t run so smoothly. She would just get irritable and start crying and no amount of toys or singing would calm her down. I would have to frantically try and find somewhere to quickly pull over in peak traffic (a shopping mall or garage) to try and calm her down. But as soon as I would hold her she would be completely fine again. Even though it would take me so much longer to get home looking back on that time I realise that we managed to get so much “roadside” bonding time. We would just play and laugh as I tried to get her to forget about the trek we still had to get home. Luckily she grew out of it pretty quickly and by the next month she was completely used to the car seat and our trips home.

  13. Monique Leendertz
    Wed, 01 October 2014
    Reply

    I do the same when I see other “babas” too. My colleagues always remind me that I have two if my own. Isn’t it amazing how we miss our babies when they are not around but long for some “me” time after a few hours 🙂

  14. Nangamso Jacobs
    Mon, 13 October 2014
    Reply

    Thank you for sharing. This is so true, whenever I travel alone with the little one, there will always be some good samaritan offering to help make things easier – and when you’re a highly independent person, it’s hard to accept help, but I think people’s compassion, especially those who have been through it, is amazing.

  15. Mascha Thiart
    Thu, 16 October 2014
    Reply

    When my baby girl was six weeks old, I had to have my gallbladder removed. A week later we travelled to meet dear friends half way for a long planned weekend together. Unfortunately I developed complications the Saturday morning and my husband had to rush me to hospital in excruciating pain. In the craziness we left our baby with our friends and before driving off my husband briefly explained that there is formula milk and a bottle in our room. Unfortunately my friend could not find it in time when her ten week old and our little one awoke at the same time for a feed. So she did a wonderful thing that I am truly thankful for, she breastfed my baby as well! It turned out that I was in hospital for two more days and was on strong drugs, so breastfeeding was unsafe. I was exclusively breastfeeding before the operation and planned to continue after I recovered, but did not take this set back into account. And we all know how quickly a baby can get used to the easy flow of a bottle. So my dear friend continued breastfeeding my baby till I was discharged! That is true compassion in action.

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