My oldest – 6 – and Shannon, my husband, were roughhousing last week and I heard a pause, followed by a long sigh and, “Oh no – it looks like this boy has my teeth.”
Rounding the corner wondering what that meant, my husband relayed childhood horrors of having teeth pulled because his would grow in behind the baby teeth without either falling out on their own, leaving two rows of teeth, and visits to the dentist.
Sure enough my precious boy had the same scenario playing out in his mouth, and was terrified at the thought of having his tooth pulled (as any 6 year old would be, right?) I promptly called the dentist who instructed me to have him wiggle it and hopefully loosen it and come out on it’s own.
I mentioned that to my “big boy” and he was game, fully on the plan. I even caught him on the counter with toy tweezers trying to operate on himself – he pulled and wiggled as it became looser and looser, and was ecstatic, saying “I can’t believe this is happening!”, “I must be dreaming this!”, and “This is the most exciting day of my life!” I assumed he was excited about the tooth fairy – I mean, what a GREAT deal! You lose a baby tooth and the tooth fairy takes it away giving you some moolah! Even though we had never taught him about the “tooth fairy”, since he brought it up, we talked it up and he played along.
The big day came when he was chewing on his new snorkel, stopped, gasped and exclaimed “MY TOOTH FELL OUT!” We, of course, immediately became detectives trying to track down the tiny tooth on the kitchen tile. Finding it, he did a happy dance all the way to the pool!
Later that night I went out to meet with a friend and around 8pm I got a text from a concerned daddy that read “We have a tooth fairy problem – our big boy is VERY worried about the tooth fairy and wants to hide his tooth from her!”
I returned home at 10 pm to get the scoop, my boy could not go to sleep: he was very concerned about the tooth fairy and DID not want him to take his tooth (he is nostalgic like his mama). He was very upset and said he didn’t want the money – he would rather keep his tooth, begging his dad to hide it, he even cried and said the tooth fairy was sparkly and scary and he did not want her to come.
So in the morning over breakfast I began to talk with Kenimer. I’m not gonna lie – I was a little sad that I didn’t get to swoop into his room as the tooth fairy and bring delight to him by leaving some real cash. His daddy and I exchanged a few nods and quickly made the decision to tell him the truth about the tooth fairy.
Daddy: ”Kenimer, do you know who the tooth fairy is?”
Kenimer: “No, I don’t know her – she is sparkly and has a wand.”
Daddy: “I know the tooth fairy and she is really just a nice lady who loves you very very much, she’s a special person to you and is going to take your tooth and put it in a safe place since that is important to you – she cares about you and cares about what is important to you! The tooth fairy story is a make-believe story and the whole thing is a reason to celebrate a milestone, losing a tooth is one more step towards growing up!”
“Can you guess who it is?”
He smiled a toothless grin and said “You’re not really sparkly but I like this idea better.”
A few hours later he came to me with the ziploc bag in his hand and proudly proclaimed “I’m gonna put the tooth under my pillow tonight!”
MORAL OF THE STORY: in this case the truth was much better – in fact it seemed to set Kenimer somewhat free from his fear.
who ever came up with the whole tooth fairy idea, anyway?
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Are you nuts?
Let's be honest, most of us can say there was at least one moment in your life where you've wondered; Am I nuts? it could have been an obsession about something, prolonged sadness, extreme sensitivity or the " Why can't I just get over this" nagging question.
It's been almost a year since Kenimer was dismissed from speech therapy.