My son, Leif, is 6. As many other six year olds he has started to lose those pesky baby teeth, effectively reducing his chewing capacity to whatever he can grind with only his molars. This new rite of passage in his life has also led to the diminishing weight of my wallet.
We have decided to participate in the decades old tradition of the 'Tooth Fairy'. For those of you who do not have children, or who had crappy parents who drank all their spare change away (by crappy, I mean brilliant), I will explain said tooth fairy concept: Child loses tooth. Child places tooth under pillow. Parent sneaks in to room. Parent extracts tooth from under child's pillow. Parent replaces tooth with money - no set denomination. Child wakes up at 6 am with boundless energy and endless ideas on how to spend their pittance. Parent smiles, tells them how cool it is and forfeits coffee due to lack of change. Fin.
Not so, in my house. This was how Leif's second tooth fairy experience went:
4:00 pm: Leif draws 3 pictures for the tooth fairy- one of him with a gappy tooth grin, one with a tooth smiling around a pile of money and one of a ninja turtle. Leif contemplates keeping the ninja turtle picture, but decides that it will get him a little extra cash.
7:30 pm: I tuck Leif in: kisses, hugs, and another day of Robert Munsch. Leif advises me he has his tooth secured with his pictures on his headboard, so the tooth fairy can find it. This is good, I will be able to find it in the dark.
12:05 am: I turn the handle on his door, creeping slowly in to his pitch black room. The kid has his radio BLARING CBC radio. Nothing like dreaming about Rita McNeil. I am so distracted by Rita and her coal miners, I trip. Regaining my composure I stop, like a burglar waiting for the alarm, I wait for him to stir, but he doesn't wake. This is perfect. I stroll over to his bed, a little less carefully now, knowing he's sleeping soundly and reach to the place where he left his tooth and pictures at bedtime...only THEY AREN'T THERE. I reach under his pillow and I find nothing, same thing on his night stand. I creep to the other side of his bed and reach under his pillow, rolling him over at the same time and I find, once again, nothing. I can't think straight with Rita screeching in my ear, so I reach over to his radio and turn it off. As soon as I do, Leif wakes up.
"Mom, what are you doing?"
Looking around and feeling guilty for some reason, I reply "Nothing Leif, just making sure you're asleep"
"Well I was until you woke me up"
"Ok, night bud..." And I sneak back to bed.
Laying in bed, I realize that I am going to have to try again, no matter how dangerous the mission. All of a sudden I hear my door.
"Mom, the tooth fairy didn't come yet"
"Leif, it's too early- the tooth fairy doesn't come until you're fast asleep. Now, get back to bed"
"Okay, but please don't come in my room while I'm sleeping again- that's super creepy".
Thanks jerk, I'll remember that the next time you want another Ninja Turtles DVD.
12:20: I decide enough time has passed, and I will once again attempt to find this tooth. Now it's a matter of principle. I slip back in to his room, and try the bookshelf attached to his headboard.
"MOM WHAT ARE YOU DOING IN HERE AGAIN?!"
"Uh...er...checking to make sure you're asleep..."
"I was sleeping, until you came back in to my room. This is weird. I'm trying to sleep"
I walk out. I have been defeated.
7:45 am: Leif is eating, pancakes because they're soft and won't get stuck in his gappy mouth. He looks a little sad.
"Mom, the tooth fairy didn't come. I think it was because I kept getting up and moving my tooth"
I thank god I still have change for coffee.
Note to Grade 1 Teacher Re: Lost Tooth
Dear Mrs. B
Leif is concerned you won't believe him that he lost a tooth, so I am writing this note to inform you that, in case you didn't notice the giant gap in his gums, Leif has, in fact, lost a tooth.
He wanted to bring it to school but I object to carrying biological waste to school, therefore you will have to take my word for it.
Have a nice day