Thank Goodness For The Tooth Fairy

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Rebecca, after tooth pulled,
before Tooth Fairy Reminder

Rebecca lost her first tooth last night. I mean, it was the first tooth she ever lost, but it was also the first tooth to come in when she was a baby. As far as baby teeth go, hers were a bit late to poke through. I remember when she was 13 months, sticking my finger in her mouth and feeling the sharp little point as that first tiny tooth painfully burst through her sore, irritated gums.

I felt a mix of emotions. Excitement that she had finally reached this milestone. Nostalgia that her cute little gum smile would never look the same. Amazement at how quickly the time was rushing by. Relief that I had stopped breast feeding just a week earlier (talk about good timing!). In the following months, the rest of her tiny baby teeth rapidly popped through. That one little tooth, the right of her 2 lower front teeth, seemed to have opened a dental floodgate.

Now it's gone from her mouth forever. Somehow over 5 years have passed since that late summer day of discovery. Her adult tooth has already pushed through, coming up behind the baby tooth, indicating the need for numerous wiggling sessions to loosen up the baby tooth and avoid expensive orthodontic bills. That adult tooth looks way too big for her mouth, so much bigger than the rest of the her baby teeth. I can't believe it's supposed to be there.

This has also been a nostalgic milestone, although it was a bit overshadowed by Rebecca's reaction. The tooth was so loose, it was causing her pain and she didn't want anyone to touch it. As soon as an adult hand came within 3 inches of her mouth, she would start crying and screaming, the anticipation too much for her. Greg and I finally convinced her to let us tug on it, and she tearfully opened her mouth. One quick tug, one small trickle of blood, and there it was.

She cried while we held a washcloth to her mouth, until I asked a question, "so, what does this mean? Who's coming tonight?". All at once the tears dried up and a newly landscaped smile formed. "The tooth fairy!" she shouted.

Finally she gets to use the tooth pillow

From then on it was all excitement. She showed the tooth to her brother, who seemed a bit wary of it, to say the least. She called Grandma and Grandpa. At bedtime she carefully placed it in her long waiting tooth pillow (bought at a craft fair over a year ago), and stuffed it under her big pillow.

Lo and behold, this morning the tooth was gone, a crisp $1 bill in its place. I asked her if she saw the tooth fairy last night, and she said yes. Apparently the tooth fairy was 'wearing a sparkly pink dress, with ruby red rings, red hair, and a tooth wand'. Go figure.

Amid all this drama, I still have to wonder at the speed with which my baby is growing. If this tooth opens the floodgate again, she will soon have a mouth full of adult teeth. And I will still be sitting here, scratching my head and wondering where did all the time go?

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Kenneth Canfield said...

Dear Noelle,
Thank you for posting the pictures (oh, the drama of it all) for us to see. And please thank Rebecca for calling us and telling us of the "big" event. Funny that you say you wonder where the time has gone— just wait until Rebecca reaches the age you have reached . . . talk about wondering where the time has gone!

Anyway, we're glad that the tooth fairy stopped by to pick up Rebecca's tooth. We're only sorry we didn't get to see him/her as Rebecca did!

Love you guys,

Grandma and Grandpa

Amber said...

It's such a funny rite of passage when you think of it. Losing our teeth? Talk about strange. :-)

She'll reflect back fondly upon all those pictures!

Noelle said...

It is a very strange thing - I occasionally still have the dream where my teeth all fall out. Maybe this is how it started?

Brittany said...

My 6 year old lost his first tooth over Christmas. I wanted to tear up a little but he had pulled the sucker out knowing it was time and handed it to me and said "I get money now right?"

So much for a bittersweet moment!

Karen said...

Congratulations Rebecca!!
I was about your age also when I lost my first baby tooth. I remember ,my cousin Dean said,"I'll take it out for you."At that point he tied a string around my tooth and a string around the bedroom door,and slammed it shut.And that is how I lost my first tooth! Thats what older cousins are for!! I got ten cents
from the tooth fairy. Love, Auntie Karen

wiltonwinrow said...

Whenever kids have some "firsts" in their life, the usual follow-up to that would be, "They grow up so fast," then come the tears of joy. The tooth fairy's visit really motivated her to go through all of that, didn't it? Congratulations, Rebecca!

Wilton Winrow