When I was a little girl, I stumbled upon the biggest secret of all time. And until now, I have kept that secret.
A long time ago, when the world was new, my sisters and I spent much of our summer vacation with our grandparents in Southern California. My grandmother was—and still is—a glamorous, gorgeous woman who worked out every day, applied flawless makeup, dressed beautifully and was darn lucky she married a chef because she couldn’t—and still can’t—cook worth a darn. Except cheese on toast. She still makes excellent cheese on toast.
Anyway, one summer, I had a loose tooth. It wiggled. It waggled. It was clearly going to jump right out of my gums at the earliest opportunity. So it was no surprise when we were at the beach and my tooth fell out as I bit into a French fry. After a bit of drama from me (a few tears, mainly because when the tooth fell out I dropped the rest of my fries), Grandma bagged my tooth.
That night, while we were sleeping, I heard a noise that woke me up. And when I opened my eyes, my grandmother was standing next to my bed, with one hand under my pillow. She looked a bit surprised, but started talking to me. She must have stood there for a good ten minutes, chatting with me, with her hand stuck under my pillow. And after she left, I reached under my pillow and discovered my Grandmother’s secret.
My grandma was the Tooth Fairy.
I know. Can you imagine? My grandma was the Tooth Fairy. And I was the only person on the planet who knew about it. Well, I assumed my grandpa knew. And probably Santa and the Easter Bunny and the rest of the guys she hung out with.
Suddenly that explained everything. Why she was so glamorous. Why she couldn’t cook (obviously she had been too busy in her Tooth Fairy training to learn to cook meals). I have no clue why those things explained my grandma’s vocation, but to me they did.
Because seriously, my grandma was the Tooth Fairy.
I just knew that all my friends would be jealous. After all, their grandmothers were ordinary women who could cook, didn’t wear wings and didn’t have extensive collections of teeth from children all over the world. Of course I couldn’t tell anyone my Grandma’s secret. I was worried that if I did, not only would I not get visits from the Tooth Fairy, Santa and everyone else might leave me off their lists too.
I’m telling you, it was a burden, this whole secret-keeping thing.
I spent many nights wondering to whom my grandma was delivering quarters—and I spent many nights with a tooth under my pillow waiting for Grandma to show up. Strangely, I always fell asleep before she arrived. But after a while, I learned that Santa and the Easter Bunny and even the Tooth Fairy didn’t really exist. But for a while, my grandma was—and still is—the most rocking grandma on the planet.
Because my grandma was the Tooth Fairy.
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