Tooth Fairy, we meet at last!

Emma has FINALLY lost a tooth.  She will be 7 this September, so this is very big deal.  I had thought that she would lose a bottom tooth first, isn’t this the usual way?  But she surprised us by losing her top tooth. 

She lost it at summer camp (what we call the day care at the preschool nearby).  Summer camp sounds way cooler.  I have to admit, a small part of me grieved that I wasn’t the one to actually pull it out.  Sigh, the things you miss when you work. 

We thought it traditional to give $1.00 for her tooth, via the Tooth Fairy.  But Emma had some kid in her class that told her he got $5.00 and a TOY for his tooth.  I could throttle that kid.  I calmly explained to Emma that I didn’t think this was how the Tooth Fairy worked.  That she had SOOO many teeth and $1.00 bills in her pockets that she didn’t have room for toys, too.  Stupid camp kid, making me lie through my teeth.

As soon as we got home, Emma raced her to pillow and put the tooth there.  I had to “check” on it later to make sure it was still safe. (Read, in a fetchable spot)  Lance snuck in around midnight and slipped the tooth out and the cash in.  She woke up the next morning and was predictably excited that, indeed, her tooth was gone and in place was a crisp clean $1.00 bill.  Ok, so the dollar bill was actually wrinkled and had the word “LOSER” written on it in pink ink, but in her mind it was hot off the press.

We thought that would be the end of it, but the next night, Addie came out into the living room to fetch me because Emma was crying.  I came to check on Emma thinking she had a bad dream or was thirsty or something.  Instead, she was crying because she wanted her tooth back.  She just could not understand why the Tooth Fairy had not left her the tooth to play with AND give her money. 

What on earth do you tell a child? 

First of all, I would like to just give a shout out to the genius who invented the Tooth Fairy.  It’s not enough that at Christmas and Easter we must pay homage to fictional creatures and thereby forego the accolades for the wonderous gifts and treats.  But now we must create yet another situation for a figment of our imaginations to take the credit for giving money to our kids in place of their teeth.  I disapprove, America.  Yet I am suckered in by the innocence of my children. 

Well, shall I invent a story that the Tooth Fairy has mailed back her tooth?  Shall I tell my sweet child the truth?  Or do I just tell her to suck it up and enjoy the dollar?

This is a big deal, folks.  I am setting the bar right now for all the 40 or so teeth that our two girls will lose in the future. 

What to do, what to do…

Emma\'s first loose tooth

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7 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Misty on June 27, 2008 at 7:46 pm

    Well…I hope you don’t take this the wrong way but we don’t participate in the ficticious tooth fairy, easter bunny or santa claus for the reason you mentioned…lying. We want our children to be honest with us and have heard to many stories of kids that learn the truth that crushes them. We as parents are seen as unfalable and all knowing to our young, unknowing children. My concern with these “traditions” is the expectation or hope that we have as parents for our children to tell us the truth but we as parents can lie to them about aforementioned characters and where is the line drawn. So I guess the question is when is it ok to lie? Is by telling our children to believe in these things for the greater good-preserving life or will it one day come back to bite us and be a detriment to a trusting relationship.

    Jesse and I feel pretty strongly about this and its hard not to seem critical or harsh in this area but are particularly sensitive to the end results of small lies that have to be maintained for fear of “hurting” someone. I think if you say or do something that makes you feel bad, guilty, shame, and on and on you probably should renige. It’s better to retract and apologize. You can maybe even be alittle more creative (not insinuating that your not) in the whole growing up thing and still do something special for your kids-money, treats, go for ice cream or ask them what they would like to do when they loose a tooth. All the while building the relationships on trust and not deception. My kids love it that we keep their teeth and each have all the teeth they lost in little bags or a box. I bet Emma would be very forgiving if you told her the truth and made it up to her with whatever her favorite treat or activity is. I’m amazed at our childrens capacity to forgive and love us still, evenwhen we mess up.

    Break the mold, make up your own traditions and involve the kids in the decisions as to what those activities will be! Ok, I hope we are still friends because I really do think you guys have your kids best interests at heart and want to find ways to make growing up fun, exciting or memorable. Personally, I think this topic hits closer to our hearts than probally most and we may or may not be taking this way too seriously. So, with that said, I hope we don’t come off in the wrong way or as party poopers! ‘Cause nobody likes a party pooper, not me, no siree.

    Reply

  2. Posted by soundsliketomatoes on June 27, 2008 at 8:39 pm

    Actually, to be very clear, Lance and I DID tell the girls that there was no Santa, Easter Bunny or Tooth Fairy. Several times, in fact. But our girls really wanted to believe in them. When it came to Christmas, we didn’t want to crowd the real meaning of Christmas with a fictious story. But Emma knows this (and can preach you the real Christmas story) and chooses to believe in Santa anyway. We tone it down, we don’t obsess, but as Lance and I both had Santa in our childhoods and came out perfectly normal, we’re ok with giving the girls ONE Santa gift each. We don’t do Easter with the Easter bunny, but other folks (like my mom and nice old ladies at our church) do, and once again, we reiterate the importance of what Easter is all about, the resurrection of Christ. Once again, Emma can tell you all about it, we have it on film. When it came to the Tooth Fairy tho, it almost felt cruel to NOT do it, as she was so excited about it and ALL the kids she is with everyday were excited for her. So we chose to do it. We won’t go overboard (read, not giving $5.00 and a toy for ONE dad-gummed tooth), but it is fun, it is exciting and so long as we are being wise about this, it is safe. I don’t think when she finds out that it is us all along, that she will be sad. I think it will make her realize how we wanted to make life fun for her.

    And remember, this is just a silly blog where I am at liberty to wax eloquent and over-exaggerate for entertainment value.

    But thank you for speaking freely, that’s what friendships are for.

    Reply

  3. Posted by fivemoreminutesplease on June 27, 2008 at 10:29 pm

    See…we thought that the Santa thing would be better, exposed, as to not mix messages about the real meaning of Christmas…however, the rest, we thought we would just let them eventually figure out. We just choose to answer questions with questions. That way, there is no lying at all. For example: “Mommy, is the tooth fairy real?” “Merci, Do you think she is real?” “Mommy, how does she get into our house?” “How do you think she gets into our house?” You can do this will everything right down to what she does with the teeth, WHY she didn’t leave the teeth…etc…let them think it up…sooner or later, the realize they are fictional, and rationalize them away, and you didn’t even have to do it. It has worked for us so far. Then, we make it our little secret, when they do figure it out…because Micah is so stinking smart and would tell the world!! Some parents would not be happy with us! But to each his/her own…and yes, it’s a blog, so who cares…it’s just for fun. Just wanted to give you a fun tip we used that works. Micah knocked his front, top tooth out on a table when we were out to dinner. We felt so horrible, that we DID give him five dollars for that one!! He was pitiful!! 🙂

    Reply

  4. Posted by Misty on June 27, 2008 at 11:05 pm

    See I knew it! I was being way too serious! Dadgum it! Thanks for being my friend, I’m retarded… 🙂

    Reply

  5. Posted by Alice Wiggins on June 30, 2008 at 1:55 pm

    As the old lady on the block, I’ll put in my 2 cents worth. I LOVE Santa, not to be confused w/ the birth of Christ but as one of those silly things that make childhood fun. When we were growing up (and with my kids) Santa left one gift out (read, unwrapped) under the tree and although I don’t have a lot of great memories from my childhood the ones of my brother & I racing (quietly, mind you) out to see what Santa left are some of my favorites. I can still picture the new doll or the bicycle under the tree, it was dark and only the tree was lit. We would (again, quietly) play with the Santa gift for a few minutes and then go crawl back into bed to wait for mom & dad to wake (since this usually took place around 3 or 4 a.m.). That is wonderful memory that I cherish to this day (for those of you who don’t know me, I’m 52 w/ 3 grown kids). I can honestly say I don’t remember at what point I no longer believed, but being 4 years older than my brother I’m sure I had to pretend for a little while longer and that was okay. I remember a lot of things my parents did that were hurtful and caused me serious pain, but I don’t remember as an innocent child blaming them for lying to me about such a wonderful thing. It is such a great memory I actually collect Santa Claus figurines. (Okay, I hear you cringing, but that’s okay) I followed this tradition with my children and we have a wonderful relationship. Trust me, it’s not the Santa Claus myth that they will remember as treason. And, if you’re lucky & you pray a lot, they will have wonderful memories of their childhood, with or without Santa.

    Reply

  6. Posted by soundsliketomatoes on July 1, 2008 at 1:08 pm

    Thank you Alice!

    Reply

  7. Posted by Carrie Mace on June 7, 2009 at 2:54 am

    I’m so glad you posted a picture! There’s nothing cute than a kid with a missing tooth 🙂

    Reply

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