A few weeks ago, a small miracle occurred in our household…
Bruiser’s two bottom front teeth became loose.
This was cause for much tooth wriggling and soul-searching discussion. As far as my five-year-old son was concerned, he was the first person on the planet to have two loose teeth. The resulting tension in our house was palpable.
“Will there be blood?” he asked me at one point, tentatively touching one of the teeth.
“Yes,” I admitted. “There might be some blood.”
“Aw, NOOOO,” he howled. “Not blood, NOT BLOOD!” He ran off to the den, where only SpongeBob could soothe him.
Occasionally, of course, he completely forgot he had two loose teeth, only to be reminded when he bit down on a hard piece of food.
“OWWWWWW!” he wailed piteously, holding his jaw. “Mommy, WHY does God make loose toofez hurt, WHY?!”
I started to speak and then hesitated. I had no good answer. What is up with this loose tooth thing, God? I totally don’t get it. Bruiser watched me for a moment as I opened and closed my mouth, wordless. “Well, it’s NOT NICE!” he said finally. From that point on, he would only agree to eat Gogurt and peanut butter sandwiches.
Mercifully, a day or two later, my son came home from school proudly wearing one of his loose teeth in a tooth-shaped plastic box that hung around his neck.
“It fallded out during lunch!” he told me proudly. “There were blood! Stevie walked with me to the office!” He held up his sweater in order to show me a sticker he’d affixed to the belly of his t-shirt. “I lost a tooth today,” I read. Bruiser beamed. “You know what this means, right?” I asked him.
“It means the Tooth Fairy is coming tonight!” I said.
Much excitement ensued. The tooth fairy hadn’t been to our house in at least two years, so both kids were jonesing for a visit. That night, Bruiser placed his tooth under his pillow and did his best to keep his eyes shut tight.
“She won’t come if she knows you’re awake,” I told him. “So go right to sleep.”
“Okay, Mommy, I’ll try,” he said. Within minutes, he was snoring loudly.
Bright and early the next morning, Bruiser’s shouts could be heard throughout the house.
“She comeded! The Toof Fairy comeded! She lefted me three dollars!” He held his money over his head in triumph as he ran to me from across the kitchen and gave me a good morning hug. “And Mommy! I saw her!” he whispered breathlessly in my arms.
“You saw the Tooth Fairy?” I asked.
“She’s all white and she’s a ghost,” he told me quietly. “She had white hair. She were nice, but she didn’t see me.”
“Wow,” I said. “That’s amazing!” He grinned uncertainly and I could understand his issues. Despite the money gift, the Tooth Fairy seemed a little bit… creepy.
A few days later, the second bottom tooth came out while he was having his after school snack. As bedtime approached that night, the tooth was placed under his pillow with great ceremony and excitement. “Be sure and go right to sleep again, so that the Tooth Fairy doesn’t pass you by!” I told him as I tucked him in. His smile looked more like a grimace. I turned off the light.
Five minutes later, we heard him wailing at the top of the stairs”What is it?” I asked him, coming up the stairs to meet him.
“I don’t want to sleep in my room tonight,” he hiccuped, tears running down his face. “I’m ascared of the Toof Fairy!” With that, he broke into a fresh round of loud sobs.
“You can sleep in my room tonight, Bruiser,” his sister called from across the hall. Instantly, Bruiser brightened. He’s a kicker, so getting an invitation to sleep in another family member’s bed is a rare and precious treat… to him, anyway. Quickly, he scuttled into his sister’s room and climbed into her bed. Within minutes, both children were asleep.
“You really can’t blame him for being upset,” I told my husband after I came back downstairs. “The question is, why aren’t more kids afraid of the Tooth Fairy? I mean, isn’t it kind of weird that some woman with wings sneaks into your bedroom in the middle of the night and takes your teeth? How is that acceptable practice?” Silently, we both mulled over this unsettling tradition.
Bright and early the next morning, both kids were up and running to Bruiser’s bedroom to find out if the Tooth Fairy had once again paid a slightly sinister– though lucrative– visit.
Three dollars were located underneath Bruiser’s pillow. The children were in ecstasy. The Tooth Fairy can now return any time she wants to.
Today, my son looks like this.
He has an adorable lisp.
We’re teaching him to sing “All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth.”
It’s going to be a great holiday.
Tooth Fairy picture via Eden Pictures/Flickr