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What it's Like to Fly With a Baby — in GIFs

Photograph by Getty Images

The Internet loves stories about kids on planes. With the holidays around the corner, there will be plenty of flights with babies and, consequently, plenty of tears.

But no one seems to cry more about crying babies than adults on the Internet, as seen in this popular thread on Reddit — another one of those stories about apologetic parents passing out bags of candy and ear plugs to fellow passengers. We often hear strangers bemoaning what it's like to have their peace and quiet on a roaring commercial jet disturbed. (How dare that baby be a baby!)

Here's what traveling with an infant is like from my perspective as a mom and expressed in GIFs.

1. Frenzied Packing

Do we have every possible thing we could need? This is when I must become a veritable Mary Poppins with a magic bag to match. I'm packing diapering essentials, a selection of toys, a tablet full of videos and games to distract our kid. Also, a first-aid kit, over-the-counter medicine and a favorite blanket. When the moment strikes, I'll be ready.

RELATED: 10 Last-Minute Gift Ideas for Traveling Kids

2. The Moment Before Getting On the Plane

I imagine that what I tell myself just before boarding a plane with a baby is not unlike a locker room full of athletes before a big game. I've been mentally preparing for weeks and, once I hear the airline attendant call forth "people with children or people who otherwise need early boarding," it's go time.

3. How I Feel When I Learn People Expect Me to Bring Them Treat Bags

Really? We were all kids once, so how about you cut parents some slack if they're doing the best they can. Sorry I didn't have time to pack 30 bags in addition to everything I already did to get ready for this trip.

4. When Your Baby Starts Whimpering

Oh no, it's happening. I reach for my first line of defense: Milk. No? Check diaper. No? Begin the dance between Mom and Dad trying to make a baby smile with hugs and toys.

5. What I'd Rather Be Doing

I'll have a martini, two olives. Thank you.

6. How You and Your Spouse Look at Each Other When the Baby Falls Asleep

I can always count on you, sweet husband. Why do we ever argue about anything? We're obviously such a great parenting team. I'd high five you if I didn't think it'd wake the baby.

7. When You Notice Your Kid Is Quiet But Grown-Ups are Displaying Bad Behavior

"Hey, wouldn't it be great to be on a plane without babies?" You know what would be great too? If there were planes with no people getting drunk and loud, people who smell or people who insist on telling you their life story.

RELATED: 5 Strategies for Holiday Travel with Kids

8. How You Feel Leaving the Plane

We made it to our destination relatively unscathed. It's too soon to think about the return flight — I'll think about that later. For now, let the holiday and family togetherness commence.

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