Toddler Tuesday is another Flashback Friday. A visit from the past when life was easier and all I had to worry about was the toothfairy
The tooth fairy has finally made a visit to the Manic house. Thank goodness. There was some fear that the little tooth-stealing twit would never get here.
For the last year or so, Junior has constantly asked when his teeth were going to fall out. Every night, Junior made me test his teeth for wiggles. I hate to admit this, but there were a couple of times when I actually wished a ball would hit Junior in the mouth. At least he would lose a tooth. And I could stop trying to wiggle teeth that were apparently cemented in his jaw.
But losing teeth is a rite of passage for kids. It ranks right up there with getting a driver’s license, wearing big boy underwear, and actually squeezing the toothpaste out of the tube without mommy’s help. And poor Junior was behind. I mean, he did have the big boy underwear and toothpaste things down—but that child could not lose a tooth no matter how hard he tried.
This was pretty strange. I mean, Junior had all of his teeth by eighteen months—even the big ones. I know this because he hadn’t quite gotten past the “let me bite everything on earth including mommy” stage by the time all his teeth were present and accounted for. I felt those teeth. They were good, strong baby teeth. I just didn’t know that they would stay in his mouth forever.
This was devastating for Junior. All around him, teeth were literally flying from the other kids mouths. Toothless children grinned at him daily, adding to his torment. And then a miracle occurred. Junior finally lost a tooth. Actually, I think a tooth just surrendered. I think it got tired of resisting his wiggling attempts and finally gave up.
And that’s when the real trouble began.
You see, everybody does the tooth fairy thing differently. It’s not like Santa Claus. Everybody knows what to do for Santa. We’ve seen ten thousand TV specials about it. Santa comes down the chimney. He leaves presents. Santa rules are written in stone. You cannot mess up the Santa tradition no matter how much eggnog you’ve had on Christmas Eve.
But the tooth fairy is a whole different ballgame. There aren’t any TV specials about the tooth fairy, so everyone is pretty much left on their own. And that leaves a margin for error. Look, if Junior’s tooth fairy does something different from a classmate’s tooth fairy, doubts about the tooth fairy’s existence start to emerge. And once those doubts creep in, you’ve got the whole “is Santa Claus real” issue to deal with. I’m just not ready for that.
And I have to admit, I was pretty excited about finally getting to do the tooth fairy thing. And Junior was excited too. So excited that he ran around all day singing a special tooth fairy song that he had made up just for her. So expectations were pretty high.
At that point, it would have been easy to mess up. I had already taken an informal tooth fairy poll from other parents. So I knew that some left as much as ten dollars a tooth and some left nothing but a thank you note. As you can see, there’s not much tooth fairy consensus among parents.
Since Harry and I were on our own, we had some decisions to make. First, we decided that ten dollars was too much per tooth. By the time you’ve paid dental visits, cavity fillings, miscellaneous tooth replacements, braces and ten bucks a tooth for the tooth fairy, you’ve basically spent the equivalent of college tuition on your child’s mouth. Good teeth are fine, but he needs an education too.
So that night, after Junior was snoring away, we crept into his room and left a folded five-dollar bill under his pillow. And we took his little tooth, marveled over it and then wrapped it up and put it away for safekeeping.
And Junior never knew a thing. Harry and I congratulated ourselves on being the perfect tooth fairies. Until breakfast. That’s when Junior announced that he would no longer sell his teeth to the tooth fairy. From now on, he was keeping them. It seems Junior’s teeth were too cool to sell.
So much for the tooth fairy tradition. And I was just getting good at it, too.Add me to your rss reader | Become a Fan on Facebook!