The mother, Charlotte Matthews, explained it was her first flight with her three-month-old son, Monty. The plane was diverted, adding three hours to the journey time and she was exhausted from “generally being a mother”, so needed to find a comfortable position to sleep.
A person sat opposite Matthews, who she had never met before, happened to be a photographer and they captured the beautiful shot, which they showed her at the end of the flight.
“I just needed to find a position for me and Monty to sleep so I tried a few but Monty was not so keen,” Matthews, from Australia, wrote on Facebook.
“It was my first trip with my three-month-old, Monty, and I was exhausted just generally from being a mother,” Matthews continued.
“With plenty of kisses and talking to Monty, we both managed to fall asleep in this position.
“A photographer sitting across the aisle unknowingly snapped this moment. He later showed it to me and sent me a sweet note about capturing our first flight together.”
Matthews shared her story on the Love What Matters Facebook page on Tuesday 7 February and it was liked 2,000 times in two days.
“It is a big feat surviving your first flight with a three-month-old,” one person commented. “Travelling can be very intimidating. Well done mumma.”
Another wrote: “You brave, amazing woman, travelling alone with your three-month-old, you go girl. Good on you for finding a spot to sleep.”
Matthews thanked mothers for their comments on the photo, and added: “Thank you for seeing the beautiful nature of this photographer. I hope this photo brings a smile to some people’s faces and restores some of their faith in humanity.
“For any mother who will be travelling with their child, I found that so many passengers went out of their way to help me and it actually made me feel very humbled, so try not to be nervous.”