The word on the street about the Tooth Fairy
He first "noticed it" early last spring and charged into the bathroom to ask me to examine what he thought was a jiggle. "See! It's loose! I know it is!"
If you say so, I thought. I knew that his tooth was suddenly "loose" because a friend in his kindergarten class has just lost his second tooth, and Big Guy hates being behind on anything. "Yes, I see," peering and wiggling the suspect incisor. "It might be a teeny bit loose. But I don't think it's going to come out any time soon."
"How can I make it come out quicker?" he asked, pleadingly.
"You could try eating carrots and apples. Hard foods will help," I suggested.
"Bleck!" he spat.
Fast forward a year, to when his BFF loses his two bottom incisors in rapid succession. Serious loose-tooth envy sets in, but this time Big Guy's incisor is really most sincerely loose.
"Do you think the Tooth Fairy will come soon? How much money will I get?" he asked, eyes dancing at anticipated riches.
"When I was a kid, we got a quarter," I said casually.
"A quarter!" he gasped. "That's nothing. I'm going to ask my friends at school."
He proceeded on a week-long information gathering mission. I was assured that his findings were accurate because first-graders know things. Never trust an adult when you have the word on the street.
- Eating an apple will make the tooth looser. Sometimes that alone is enough to do it. Hmm ... Hadn't someone else mentioned apples a year ago?
- If you keep jiggling and twisting it, that will help, too.
- If the apple and the jiggling don't work, your dad can tie a string to your tooth and then to a door knob. He can slam the door and pull the tooth.
That last sounded so horrifying that Big Guy took an apple, unpeeled and unsliced, in his lunch every day last week. He spent every spare minute jiggling and twisting, almost to the point of developing obsessive-compulsive disorder.
By Monday night, the tooth wasn't hanging onto his gum by anything much. The constant jiggling had twisted it into an angle, giving him a vampire-like appearance. "Do you want me to try to pull it?" I asked.
Visions of the door knob must have flashed through his head. "NO!" he thundered. He did agree to try it himself, but no luck.
This morning, as he compulsively gave it a post-breakfast twist, victory was his. "Mom-MMMYYYYY! My tooth came out! My tooth came out," he said, flashing his first gap-mouthed smile.
"You're going to get a quarter! You're going to get a quarter!" Boots cheered.
"No," Big Guy glared condescendingly. "It's $2. That's what my friends say the Tooth Fairy gives."
If the word on the street is $2, I'll happily comply. It's decidedly more affordable than a kid where we used to lived who got $10, a trip to the movies with full snack bar benefits and a bike for losing a tooth. I'm happy we don't live on that street anymore. I don't think we could afford it.
Copyright 2010 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.