Mar 21, 2008

Tooth Fairy Issues

3/21/2008 — cori
I come from a family with a long line of tooth fairy issues. Growing up, I never knew when or even if the magical fairy would come. I even had a beautifully embroidered pillow with my name on it and a teeny, tiny pocket made especially for my tooth. I remember waiting as long as a week in some cases for the tooth fairy to grace me with her invisible presence. Not that I'm bitter or anything...just that that little piece of background information is crucial for understanding this story.My sweet boy just recently lost both of his front teeth - in the same day no less. That's an interesting story right there...let's detour for a bit and retell the tale...

Last Wednesday, Bennett pined away all day about his wiggly, danglely, loose, front tooth. I offered multiple times to pull it out for him. He refused. Gavin offered to tie a string to it and the other end to our dog's tail. He still refused. He much more enjoyed the 'whine all day so that everyone knows' method and hoped it would painlessly fall out as he sat upon his bottom doing nothing. He dislikes pain, even the slightest bit. Actually, he dislikes the thought of pain more than the actual pain.

Miraculously (and this could have only happened to Bennett), as he sat down for dinner, he reached up to wiggle his tooth one last time with his fingers and it just sort of fell out - no blood, no fan fare, no fireworks. Just...there you go...even a little boring, if you asked me. But, we made the customary fuss over it and took pictures. It was a wonderful dinner getting to eat in peace and quiet without hearing about Bennett's wiggly tooth for the umpteenth time.

But after dinner is when the good stuff happens. I went out running and wasn't even gone 3 minutes when I get a phone call from Chuck. I started to panic cuz he never calls me when I'm running, so there must have been a true emergency. Turns out, as the story goes, Gavin and Bennett were out front playing 'kill the carrier' (a rough and tumble football game that I've never had a desire to play). When all of the sudden, Gavin decides to stop in his tracks as Bennett is sprinting after him, obviously with his mouth wide open. Bennett rams into Gavin at full force and blood gushes everywhere. Come to find out both front teeth were actually loose, but the one that came out this time, needed a little bit more pressure before it decided to tear free from it's home for the past 6 years. Chuck said the tears lasted a good 30 minutes. The high-pitched piggy squeel, which he is well known for, went on and on and on.

You would think he would be thrilled that now he would get to put 2 teeth under his pillow. But no, this is Bennett. He is still seething over the inconsiderate act of his brother suddenly stopping in the middle of the playing field and for making him bump into him, thereby causing the premature loss of his other front tooth. It's all Gavin's fault. He knows how to play the victim well.

So, before bed, I told Bennett that I wouldn't mind writing the tooth fairy a note explaining that his brother actually caused the other tooth to dislocate sooner than expected and should get part of the reward money. He wasn't falling for that one either. I told him that if he wanted all the money, then he would have to stop blaming Gavin and just enjoy the fact that he was going to get a visit from the tooth fairy tonight. How exciting! He bought my psychology and went to bed a happy, front-toothless camper.

Might I add one side note that is also crucial to the story. A few days prior to this turn of events. We read "The Berenstain Bears Go To The Dentist". In this lovely little dram that my children take as gospel truth, Sister Bear looses her tooth and wakes up to find a shiny, new coin under her pillow. This is now the gold standard, anything less or different - wrong.

So, that night, the tooth fairy actually showed up! What do you know! In all my years I'd never seen such a punctual tooth fairy. This fairy decided to leave a whole dollar bill in place of the two teeth set precariously under his pillow. From what we gathered by later discussing this issue with the fairy, was that he/she assumed that because of the traumatic loss of one tooth and the ordinary loss of the other, a little extra compensation should be involved. Normally, we were told, a single quarter would have sufficed - but this case was filled with extenuating circumstances.

At some undetermined time in the middle of the night, the recipient of this new found wealth, stormed into our bedroom, marched over to my side of the bed and with a teary lisp shoved the folded up dollar bill in my face and said, "I only got a one! Mom, I only got a one and I losh 2 tooths. And I can't find them anywhere. I've looked under my pillow. I think they fell under my bed and its too dark and........waaaaaahhhh." I had no comprehension of what was just told me. All I know was that I could vaguely make out a dollar bill somewhere near the tip of my nose and I indeed saw a "1" on it. So, I concluded, this must be the "1" Bennett was talking about. I told him that a "1" was alot of money, that the tooth fairy was extra nice to him. He didn't care, it was still a "1". He said, "...but Sister got a shiny, new coin...".

Oh...I see where this is now I'm having to explain math concepts in the middle of the night. "Honey," I use my most calming voice, "the tooth fairy must have thought you might like a whole dollar which would have been the same as 4 shiny, new quarters, but evidently the tooth fairy didn't have any quarters." He was so distraught, he laid his head on my chest and cried and cried. I told him to go back to bed and sleep tight. Which he did. The dramatic moment of the night before was never even mentioned at breakfast.

In order to prevent tragedies such as these in the future, I hereby decree that there should be some Global Standard that tooth fairies everywhere should follow thereby, limiting the number tooth fairy complaints taken by us innocent parents.

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