6.18.2008

To travel or not to travel with an infant

Of course I know that life changes when you bring a baby into the world. Farewell to the freedom of travelling on a whim. Instead parents of a young one have to weigh the benefits of flying on a plane. Before learning I was pregnant, we imagined going to the wedding of our close friends in Vancouver BC in August.

As the date draws closer, I realize how naive we were to think it would be a simple task. First, we learned that even a newborn needs a passport. Yes, we would need to take an infant photo and apply for a passport in person to cross the Canadian border. I assumed that it was enough to have a birth certificate for the baby and our own passports. The process sounds a tad tedious but we're prepared to go through the process.




Then we realized that Kai is going to be a little under two months old. It's okay to take him on a short flight and hang out in Vancouver for the weekend right? Opinions are split on this one. Male family members who are physicians say "absolutely not" because we're exposing the baby to germs with the recycled air on the plane. However my sister in law who is also a pediatrician doesn't think it's that high risk. I know other moms who traveled with a young infant on the plane for a weekend wedding, and everything was fine. Plus there are several internet testimonies of parents traveling with newborns to far off countries. We're just talking about a short plane ride to Canada. But after hearing all these various opinions, I am torn.

The thing is that I can't imagine leaving Kai with family while we fly to the wedding. It makes me want to cry just thinking about leaving his side overnight. But at the same time, I don't want to expose him to any harm. In this process, a new option arose which was not even a consideration prior to the baby which is to miss the wedding. For some reason, this option makes me sad too. It finally dawned on me that life does really change and that a baby means letting go of that bit of freedom. It's sort of bittersweet.

At this point, we won't make a decision until the week of the wedding depending on the health of the baby and our status as new parents. I'm certain that will be the first of many tough decisions that will be made once our baby is in the world. Farewell to the carefree days.

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