We had a double whammy of Tooth Fairy visits this weekend. J lost one on Friday night (at eight she’s only a few molars away from a full set of adult teeth!) and T, a rookie who’d been growing increasingly nervous the looser his lower front tooth got, gave me a big gappy smile when I came downstairs on Saturday morning. “Your tooth’s come out!” I yelled and his hand shot to his mouth, quizzical eyes confirming he hadn’t even realised.
A quick search of the floor turned up nothing and we concluded he must have swallowed it while munching dry cereal. J happily soothed his worries with her worldly experience, “Don’t worry. If you write a note for the Tooth Fairy explaining what happened, she’ll still leave you a dollar.”
She got straight to work:
Sure enough, when I looked in on T before I went to bed there was the note on his bedside table. I pushed a shiny loonie under his pillow and silently took the piece of paper, folded it and tucked it away in my memory box.
The next morning T was triumphant! “It worked! The Tooth Fairy took the note and left me a dollar!”
I’m not really sure why but I keep my children’s baby teeth when they fall out. I can’t bring myself to throw them away – they’re a piece of what’s dearest to me. When we first moved to Canada I took the plumbing of a sink apart to locate one that had fallen down the plug-hole. I couldn’t bear to think of something from my child abandoned in a strange country, far from everything familiar. It reminds me of the first time I posted a physical photo of my eldest when she was a baby – it was like letting go of a part of her. What if it ended up crumpled or torn? I can’t quite explain it, I suppose it’s to do with connectedness. It made me think of how the only way you’re supposed to dispose of paper with arabic Quranic verses written on it is by burning it, that way the word of God can’t be disrespected or defiled by being trodden on or soiled.
I’ll probably do what my mother did and present my bemused brood with their bagged dental cast-offs when they’re older. I asked K if there were any Punjabi practices surrounding milk teeth falling out. He knew of nothing – didn’t find out about the whole Tooth Fairy deal until he was older, talk about shortchanged!
Do you have your milk teeth? Or was my mother’s collection on the macabre side? To all the parents Tooth Fairies among you, what did you do with your little one’s teeth? Let me know in the comments below… anyone else thinking of having them made into pearls and strung? 😉