17 March 2011

The Tooth Fairy Schmucked Up

In this pocket you will find
A teensy, tiny tooth of mine.
So while I sleep where dreams are made,
Let's see if you can make a trade.

Tiny Dancer lost a tooth yesterday.
And this morning in the car, I hear this little voice in the back seat saying, "The Tooth Fairy didn't come last night."
Aw, crap.
The Tooth Fairy schmucked it up.

It has been quite a long time since her last one fell out. So the Tooth Fairy has been a bit rusty.
{These make great baby gifts, personalized with fabric, name embroidered and details of the fairy, like hair color}

When the Tooth Fairy started coming to our house, I anticipated this momentous occasion with a custom made tooth pillow. She used Pottery Barn fabrics to match the bedding. Clever.

And I found another seller who wrote diminutive first tooth notes {complete with glitter to sprinkle where the Fairy trod} from the Tooth Fairy in swirly purple ink about the little boy or girl baby who was waiting for that first tooth to appear and how this tooth would be whisked away and show up the next morning to cries of rejoicing from the parents ready to snap that first tooth picture. {Rocket's went to a little boy named Peter in Madison, home of the Badgers and Tiny Dancer's showed up in baby Charlotte in Orlando, home of all things princess}. These are memories that they still share as special, knowing that the loss of their tooth is living on with another child.
Mr. Tooth Fairy even mentioned last night that he was plum out of gold coins, so it is not as if it was a surprise that this was happening.
The Rocket, who will turn officially teenaged next week, lost his last one within the last year. And the same thing happened. The Tooth Fairy was up way too late in her studio and then crawled up into bed. In the morning, no gold coins {incidentally, Rocket was not that concerned, said he knew "The Truth," and didn't know what to do about these gold coins anyway! He didn't know they were actual dollars!}

You wouldn't even know that she was missing one. We have always called her our shark-tooth baby. Her next tooth has been waiting in the wings for weeks, peeking halfway out of the pink blanket of her gums, jutting into her mouth at weird angles like mountainous peaks. When the old one falls out the new one wastes no time filling that space, so that within an hour she has a full set of teeth again. This happened for nearly every tooth in her head. So we have rarely, if ever, had that jack-o-lantern grin in pictures with her.
But that small voice this morning broke my heart.
When this sort of thing happened when the Rocket was a wee one, the Tooth Fairy left a nice note in the pillow about having so many homes to visit and she knew that he would understand. I am not so sure that a note from the Tooth Fairy would work this time.
It is not so much that she lost a tooth and the Tooth Fairy missed it. It is more heartbreaking to know that this is the last shred of innocence that is now washed away. Even if the Tooth Fairy comes tonight bearing two gold coins and a heartfelt note about how sorry she is, there is an irreprable crack in the vessel of belief that this child carries.
So I am a bit sad today. My little girl is growing up {she is, after all, 10 years old - quite a long time for the belief to hold true} and my days as the bearer of all things magical and good is vanishing, too.
Do you remember the moment that you stopped believing in the Tooth Fairy or the Easter Bunny or Santa Claus? Or when your own kids found out?
How would you handle this... try to restore her faith with a note and a coin tonight? Or discuss what happened and dispel the myth?
Do tell! (Seriously, I am kicking myself and I could use the advice!)
Enjoy the day!


Christine said...

I feel your pain, definitely.

Once, when my oldest daughter was 7, and still believed fervently in the Tooth Fairy, she lost a tooth. It wasn't the first time, so the TF ritual had been firmly established. However, this time, I was a 2-week new mom to baby Wren, who had come into Kira's world and knocked her off her firstborn/only-child pedestal. I am sorry to report that the Tooth Fairy was overcome by total exhaustion and even though she remembered she had to enact the ritual during the night (and had planned to do so following a middle of the night Wren-feeding), the Fairy fell deeply asleep. In the morning, the sobbing of my eldest daughter who felt the TF had passed her by was enough to devastate me. Thankfully, my imaginative husband devised a story in which the TF had used a different place to hide the treasure, as Kira "was sleeping so sweetly she shouldn't be disturbed, even by magic". She HE "discovered" it while I was helping her get dressed, and all was well. But I felt like dirt for a LONG time. :-/

Juli Cannon said...

Erin, you are as precious as Tiny Dancer. Her belief preserved for this long gives her a strong foundation for a lifelong ability to trust in magical things. Don't be disheartened over this, there are still so many wonders for you to teach and share with her. She is blessed to have a wonderful mother who cares and takes note of such things.

Mellisa said...

Aw, 10 years old is a pretty good run but I completely understand how it would break your heart. Any chance of using the move as an excuse for the TF or has she lost a tooth since then?

Unknown said...

Oh, that sad quiet little voice from the backseat of your car just churns my stomach. I think I would still go for the apology note and two gold coins tonight to prolong that loss of innocence for as long as possible. But then, I can't stand the thought of either of my babies growing up and losing these strong and magical beliefs that make our world a better place to live.

Be~Jeweled by Jana said...

I'm sad to say it's been many years since the tooth fairy visited our house. But there was one time that she forgot...I later put the coin under the bed and then "found it" and told my daughter it must have fallen out from under her pillow during the night!

Courtney Breul said...

The magic will always be with her and in her heart! Yours also. Go for the note and two gold coins. Let her open that door about Santa, the TF, the Easter bunny. She will when she is ready. Just keep the magic alive. We all need it.

I will tell you though, that once the TF had to leave an I.O.U. under a pillow. Try explaining that one.

Cheeseboy said...

Having taught first grade for 7 years, I thought I had heard every Tooth Fairy story. I had never heard of a special tooth bag. What I great idea, and custom built too!

The Tooth Fairy has been forgetting a lot lately. 3 or 4 kids in my class told me he had forgot too. Darn that The Rock. Ever since he took over, it's been bad.

cjvierow said...

Erin--I totally agree with both Christine and Juls! You seem to me to be an awesome Mom--and I'll bet your husband could be "creative" and devise a plausible reason as to why the "pillow" wasn't under her pillow! Maybe on a shelf so as not to disturb her "sweet dreams" ?? It's understandable how frustrated you are with yourself, but don't beat yourself up to badly--it all works out.

somethingunique said...

Hi Erin, i'm totally with Coutrney even down to the iou it happened once to me,and one time my sister in law was trying to put the coins under the pillow and toppled over right on top of my niece talk about red faced lol. When my children fisrt learned all of it was non-exsistent it was accually not a big deal to them at all they said they new long before i even new they new but kept it going as not to ruin it for me they thought i enjoyed making them so happy they didn't want to spoil it for me how sweet is that! Hope you and your family have a Happy St. Patty's Day and my "lucky" thing was finding all of my new blog friends!! ttfn L:)

Green Shoot Jewellery Designs said...

I think it's important to keep it going and would leave a coin tonight instead. It's funny because my daughter doesn't believe in father Christmas but she is completely in awe of the tooth fairy and is an absolute believer! She's seven :-)

Craftymoose Crafts said...

Oh I feel your sadness..I think I would leave the coin tonight, too--with maybe a little note saying how busy the TF was.

Cynthia of Cynful Creations said...

Wow, that is a tough one, Erin!! Maybe a note saying the Tooth Fairy got her clocks mixed up due to daylight saving time and she's been running late all week as a result? I'm sure whatever the reason why, all will be forgiven if there is something under her pillow tomorrow morning! Good luck, let us know how it goes!

Jenners said...

I haven't had the chance to mess up being the tooth fairy (yet) but I got a giggle out of the little one puzzling over the leprechauns that visited last night and made a mess. He said "well I suppose they must be real because I know you would never make a mess like that mommy.". So cute!

Rebecca said...

I would totally stick to putting a coin and a note under the pillow....Tiny Dancer will figure out by herself (and may well have already)about the Tooth Fairy and Santa...I had at her age but it's a lovely game to play with your parents - Santa and the Tooth Fairy...my Mum still makes me and my sister a stocking (I am 29, my sister is 20...) and we make one for her (she is 60!). I would have hated to have had the myth 'officially' broken, even when I knew very well it wasn't true! These things are lovely traditions whatever your age, even if they come with a knowing smile on both sides.

Jenny said...

How I envy your daughter! I had an older sister who made it her mission in life to disabuse me of all childhood fantasies. Oh well... I lived... eventually she had children of her own and revenge was sweet. I didn't do THAT to them, but I did tell a couple of Mommy's teenage secrets! ;o)

Tell her YOU screwed up and didn't leave the door unlocked, or the pillow where the Tooth Fairy could find it, etc., and that you called the TF and asked her to come back...

Look at it this way. One day, when your daughter is grown, you'll have a wonderful laugh together over this, and without even realizing it, you'll have given her "permission" to be a very human Mommy herself. What a wonderful gift that will be.

Barbara Lewis said...

I love this post, Erin! I did the same to mine and they seemed to have survived the schmucking of the tooth fairy! "That sounded dirty" ... quoting and individual who shall remain nameless! LOL

Stories They Tell said...

I was one of those kids who loved believing in Santa, the Easter Bunny and that all my teachers were kind and knowledgeable. I lost the Easter Bunny innocence the year I was about 10 (yes, 10! I told you I loved believing) and I was searching my grandmother's garden for eggs with my grandfather (old crusty Navy man) and in frustration at our not finding any said "Where the hell did your Grandmother hide those damned eggs?" What we call losing innocence is, I think, waking up to the fact that the world does have some bad things in it. But we NEVER have to lose our optimism and our belief in the inherent good in others.

Lawrence Gilstrap said...

Aww, that's just sad. But I think my decision to break the truth to my kids early on was a good one. I didn't want to commit myself in feeding them an age-old lie anymore, so I told them that the tooth fairy doesn't exist after their second trip to their dentist in Collierville. It broke my heart that I broke theirs, but it was actually a favor that I did for them, you know. Don't you think it's about time?

ladynoble said...

My kids are still pretty young, I don't know if I can offer any advice on what to do. :(

I always knew my dad was the tooth-fairy. He would get this little smile and try to say he wasn't but I could tell he was trying not to crack. Even though I knew it was him, I looked forward to getting my dollar and having my tooth disappear from under my pillow. Good memories.

Cindy said...

Erin, your post struck a chord with me as my kids all truly believe and still have that magic as well. My oldest is 10 as you know, and you should have seen him on St. Patrick's day eager to see if he caught a leprechaun in the trap the kids set out the night before! I wonder what you decided to do...I imagine you left the extra gold coin with a note the next night? I think I would go this route as well. It's a tough but wonderful role, parenthood!:-)

Unknown said...

I am so sorry I missed this one but I ill tell you that you are not the first to have done this and you wont be the last. As far as believing I have always told my daughter (18 now OMG) that I believe in the spirit of all of these things and that they are occasionally helped along by parents. Cheesy I know but the spirit of good will and love is in all of these and that IS real. I did read already that the note from the tooth fairy did help but I know you are more upset by all of this than she is.
Sending belated hugs to you!


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