. . .even if it is 5 a.m.**
Reason #1: The line at the check-in counter will be long. Surprisingly so.
Reason #2: Same for the security line.
Reason #3: Your children, since it is 5 a.m., will be slow to catch on to the security process, and thus it will take longer. ("No, put your bag in that one, and your shoes in that one. That one. NO. THAT ONE.")
Reason #4: Your oldest child's belt will set the alarm off, and when they make him remove it, it will get stuck, and take even longer.
Reason #5: When you finally get through security and to the escalators, your youngest will have a panic attack about getting on them.
Reason #6: It will take you forever to convince her to get on, especially since your hands are full of your carry-on, and said child's booster seat.
Reason #7: Youngest child's panic attack will cause you to miss the train to the terminal, so you will have to wait for the next one.
Reason #8: There is another escalator once you get off the train.
Reason #9: Despite your best urging, little people carrying bags cannot move any quicker than snails.
Reason #10: You will finally get to the gate, have a brief moment of hope when you see the plane is still there, only to have it dashed when they tell you the door is closed and they cannot let you on.
Reason #11: Standby. With four kids.
Reason #12: You will have to explain to your kids over and over why you can't just board the plane with everyone else, that you have to wait until the last minute to see if they have seats.
Reason #13: When you experience the miracle of getting seats for all of you on the standby flight, you will all get center seats. Scattered throughout the plane. You will have to place each of your children in between strangers, even the youngest, who is on her first airplane ride ever.
Reason #14: Because the travel gods apparently hate you, it will be the worst turbulence you have experienced in years. Even the flight attendants will not be able to stand up for most of the four hour flight.
Reason #15: Since it was standby, you are now in a city other than the one you should be, so you will have to go on standby again.
Reason #16: A four hour wait and lunch in the airport with four children. (At one point you will crack and use the moving sidewalks to entertain them.)
Reason #17: Most of the flights will be full, at least, too full for all five of you to get on a flight.
Reason #18: As they are closing the door to a flight, the gate person will look at you and tell you they can fit your older three children on the flight.
Reason #19: You will yell at the older three to grab their things, and barely have time to tell them goodbye before a flight attendant scurries them away.
Reason #20: You and youngest child will watch forlornly through the window as the plane taxis away.
Reason #21: You will frantically call your husband to tell him to go back to the airport to get the kids.
Reason #22: You and youngest child will look so pathetic, the gate agent will finagle tickets for you for the next flight.
Reason #23: When you finally arrive at your destination, you will discover that your bags never made it on the original flight, and the airline will have no idea where they are.
Reason #24: You will finally get your bags and your rental car and leave the airport, 15 hours after your adventure began that morning.
Reason #25: You will have acquired so much bad traveling juju, that your flight home will be cancelled.
**Yes, the above actually happened. All of it.