Any parent who has ever travelled on a plane with a baby or small child knows what a stressful experience it can be.
Before you even board your flight there are the hours that go into planning the journey: checking every airline to find out what baby-friendly services they have on offer, carefully selecting the flights that best fit in around your little one's sleep schedule. The packing - wow, the packing - a day's worth of formula, food and snacks plus a day's extra, just in case, plus the books, toys, nappies, wipes, bottles, change mat, pram and other paraphernalia that a small child or baby can need at any given time.
Arriving at the airport there's invariably a delay, which throws your whole schedule out and ensures that by the time you get on the plane your baby has missed an entire sleep cycle and is completely overtired and irritable.
The plane is full, the seating is cramped. There is nowhere to spread out your stuff. As soon as the red seatbelt light goes on your toddler wants to go to the toilet. Your baby can't sleep. And so it goes on.
So when this travelling mum, #LoveWhatMatters, saw another mum struggling on her own during a plane journey with three young ones - two of them crying - she empathised and offered help, which was gratefully accepted. But she was astounded by the lack of empathy she saw in other passengers and took to Facebook to express her disappointment.
She said, "Here I am on vacation away from my kids (who I absolutely love to death but sometimes you need a break from toddlers) and I'm flying with an infant on my lap. Why? Because I'm a decent human being... let me just tell you what happened.
"I boarded my flight today at 5:45am in Seattle. Alaskan airlines flight 674 and I sat down in the middle seat. I sit down and there are some weight issues with the plane that need to be checked out. So everyone is sitting in this full packed plane. And a baby starts crying (oh God forbid right?) Obviously I'm totally used to crying and whining so I tune it out. Everyone around me starts huffing and puffing and mumbling. Then......I hear 2 kids crying, this lady has her toddler having a full blown melt down over her seatbelt being on (toddlers are dramatic that's nothing new) No problem.....I have mom powers and totally ignore it......BUT what I CAN'T ignore is this.
"I hear a woman complaining to this mother (that's alone with 2 crying kids) that her child needs to stop kicking her seat. THEN I hear the mother say 'she's 3 I can't believe you just did that' apparently the lady reached behind her and grabbed the child's leg (aka "oh hell no")"
She continues: "You guys....this is a full plane....and I sat here for 15 mins waiting on someone closer to this woman to offer her help...because I'm surrounded by caring adults, right? (Wrong) I turn around to see people mumbling and staring at this mother with her THREE kids ALONE....A screaming toddler / crying baby/ and a very well behaved older child. (one grown woman was holding her hands on her ears.
"SO....being a decent human being I couldn't take letting this mother drown back there....(and let me tell you she was being so freaking calm you guys....like i would have already been crying but she was doing so good) I get up out of my seat, go a few rows back and go ask her if she needs help; she immediately handed me her baby. (This lady was like HOLY HELL YESSSSSSSS!) So ya know I take her baby and then I have to go sit down for take off.......the crying stopped 😱 😱 😱 (it's a miracle 👀) so I'm sitting here holding this precious baby that so happens to fall asleep (swooooon)"
She concludes with: "My point???? Be nice and considerate. If someone needs help for God's sake HELP THEM. Complaining and mumbling doesn't do a thing except make the person that needs help feel worse (words hurt)........How we can ignore a human in distress? Please be kind. Please be considerate. Help one another...it makes everything easier. I promise you won't die."
#LoveWhatMatters' post has gone viral, with many people applauding her for speaking up. Disappointingly, her post also attracted a few negative and small-minded comments.
We guess you get that - although there are none coming from this corner.