Before I get started, I need to insert my disclaimer: The following list may not apply. If your husband isn’t really anal, with girly tendencies, traveling with him may be an easy-breezey, simple and enjoyable experience for you.
But for me it isn’t. Nope. No way.
1. My husband implements a strategy for packing our bags. Not just, “What needs to go in the carry-on, honey?” but for every.single.thing we are taking with us. I seem incapable of packing, according to him, because I don’t naturally ball up underpants and jam them inside my shoes in order to save an iota of space. I don’t think of clever ways to use the cups of my bras to nestle travel-size bottles of shampoo. It doesn’t cross my mind to shove pantiliners in the pockets of my 4-year-old’s shorts.
Silly me, right?
Maybe because he has triple the beauty products that I do, those miniscule amounts of square footage seem vital. And don’t even get me started on what it’s like to UNpack our bags once we reach our destination. It’s like a game of Clue: Master Detective when I’m looking for something as basic as the kids’s hairbrush.
2. My husband asks me 57 times a day, for the week leading up to our departure, what time we’re planning on getting in the car and what time I’m getting the girls up that morning. I’m not sure if it’s for his own mental well-being or if he feels the need to badger me to the point of ripping my own hair out, JUST to make sure I’m aware.
3. And that brings me nicely to my next point. How often am I ever late? Doesn’t he know I have gotten myself and two kids ready every single day, on my own, since they were born? And tell me how often I ever forget something they need!
Planning for a vacation is something we moms start doing weeks in advance. We hit the Target Dollar Bins for some new toys, load up on snacks, and grab a few favorite DVDs. We lay out clothes, count diapers and make sure lovies make the cut in the – apparently – highly-coveted suitcase square footage competition. We moms have got it down to a science, so QUIT MESSING WITH US!
4. My husband’s apparently never heard the saying, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” I’ve been telling him for years that it doesn’t do any of us any good if he burns through Mommy’s Bag O’ Tricks in the first 32 seconds of our trip. If the girls are happily scribbling on their Magna Doodle, let them! If they are content watching their current Backyardigans DVD, why turn to them and tell them you’ll start something new?
Once the bag of tricks is used up, we’re all screwed, buddy. So keep your trap shut and wait until they ask what else it is we have for them.
5. For some reason, my husband thinks it’s wise to frantically ask me, when we’re ten minutes INTO our trip, if I have everything we need. He goes through a roll call of sorts, even bringing up things that no sane person would ever take along. I assure him we have what we need, and then point out that if he was this concerned I’d thought of everything, it would have been helpful if he had asked, maybe, BEFORE we left the house!
6. Given the past 5 points, you’d think that with all his micro-management, he’d continue be right on top of things for the remainder of our travels. But, in fact, the exact opposite is true. As soon as we hit the airport, it’s like he’s never before met these little people, a.k.a. his children.
Me: Can you hand me the wipes?
Him: — Where are they?
Me: In the same pocket of the diaper bag where I’ve kept them for the past 4.5 years.
Me: Grab me that bag of goldfish, please.
Him — Who are you going to give them to?
Me: Kate and Maddie…your children
Him — Do they even like goldfish?
Him: Is this jacket ours?
Him: Do these shoes belong to us?
Him: What time do they go to nap?
So there you have it. Traveling with my husband is more aggravating, more trying and more exhausting than traveling with my 2 kids. Give me airport tantrums, in-flight diaper changes and lack-of-sleep-induced meltdowns any day.
I’d gladly take them.