It was the first time that our four-year-old boarded a long-haul flight from Singapore to Orlando, Florida. I still vaguely remember that it was more than 30 hours with two other transits and one domestic US flight.
Needless to say, it was definitely going to be challenging for her to be confined to a small space for more than 24 hours! However, with my training as a paediatric A&E nurse, I was confident in tackling whatever came our way, whether it was to fight her boredom or to treat simple ailments.
As usual, I had everything prepared on hand – all sorts of medications I could think of that would be required for the trip, my daughter’s space chambers and inhaler as she has a sensitive airway. I even brought along my own stethoscope and an oxygen saturation machine, just in case she became breathless on route to our destination.
Though the journey was long, we were extremely excited, especially my little one when discussing our trip to Disney World. Much anticipation was built up even before the flight took off. However, good times don’t usually last. A trip that was much anticipated, turned into a real nightmare for us as parents.
As soon as the flight took off, my little girl came down with bouts of diarrhoea and vomiting and we were camping outside the restroom for most of the flight. Her body felt warm and she was suffering from massive abdominal cramps. Just when I thought that I was well prepared, I realised that I had forgotten anti-colic medication! I recalled myself tearing up helplessly while I held her trembling body, as there was nothing I could do to ease her pain.
It was at that moment of desperation that the SQ angels appeared. Not only did the cabin crew give tonnes of medication to me, they also provided us with two 1.5-litre bottles of mineral water as they knew that hydration was utterly important for my daughter’s condition, especially in the dry plane environment. Knowing that our diaper supply was running low, the cabin crew searched high and low and collated all the diapers that they could find onboard and handed them to me.
Despite the mess that we made on the carpet flooring, the multiple requests we had, and numerous calls we made to them, the cabin crew never stopped checking on us to see if we needed additional help or any medical attention. We were truly moved.
It was through this experience with our very own national carrier that I am proud to say that Singapore Airlines not only showcased the best service in the aviation industry, but also upheld its reputation of being trustworthy, reliable, and most importantly, compassionate and showed empathy.
Kudos to all the staff who have worked relentlessly to provide such excellent service, bringing Singapore Airlines to the International Aviation Platform.
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This article was originally published by Singapore Press Holdings.