What does it feel like to be special? I am sure we all felt special at some point. But, what does it feel like to be special to someone? Someone, who never cared even if the president sat next to them, but was all smiles when they saw you? Someone, who everyone wanted to be special to but instead they chose you? Feels out of this world, right? I’ve felt it too.
The incident happened when I was travelling back to USA from India after a vacation. My connecting flight was from Abu Dhabi to Chicago. I got into the flight and came to my seat to find a lady with her baby sitting in it. I checked again the seat number and it was indeed mine. I kind of felt bad to have them move to the seat beside mine so I took their seat. The lady smiled at me and thanked me for letting her sit in the aisle seat. Once the flight took off I put on my headphones and started listening to some music and slowly closed my eyes. I had a long flight ahead of me and was eager to catch some shut-eye. All of a sudden I felt a yank from the side. I opened my eyes to find the baby playing with the cable of my headphone. The mother smiled at me apologetically. I said it was okay and started playing with the kid. I asked the lady was the child a boy or a girl, for which she replied that it was a girl pointing to the ear rings on the baby. I remembered how in my culture every child, be it a boy or a girl, get their ears pierced. The child was very lively and she started throwing about everything she could lay her little hands on. I found it really amusing. I usually hated flying with kids. They cry and cry and cry some more, but this girl was different. She was just a bundle of energy.
The other passengers found her amusing too. Soon they started handing out things for her to throw about. She kept laughing as I made faces at her. This went on for four hours before she finally got tired and decided to sleep. She slept on her mother’s lap and I tried to go back to finally listen to my music. As I lifted my hand I felt a small tug. She had her little hand wrapped around my finger while she was sleeping. Her mother immediately apologized and tried to free my hand but I stopped her from disturbing the baby and just let her hold my finger till she woke up. And so passed another three hours. Finally, she woke up. It was magical, her small eyes struggled to open against the light then finally opened wide. She saw her mother and then when she saw me she started smiling. She was so happy to see me again. Her mother said that she recognizes me. I realized it was hard for a baby to remember something even for hours. I felt like the most special person on that plane.
This small, can’t even talk yet, baby made my day. Made me look special. Her goodness within was bringing out the goodness from all the people around her. I didn’t mind having my legs cramped up or my inability to move my hand while she was sleeping. People around her didn’t sleep too. They enjoyed her antics and kept indulging her. They smiled at each other and at me whenever she threw something at the floor and laughed joyously. She was bringing us together. And the fact that she chose to sit in my lap over all the others truly did make me feel like a king. Amazing how something so little yet pure can make one feel that way.
I was sad when we finally landed. I accompanied her till we got out of the plane and then came the time for us to bid our farewells. I bid mine heavy hearted and kept looking at her little smiling face till it disappeared into the crowd.