When I was a kid, I got a silver dollar for every tooth that I lost. I don't know when I stopped believing in the tooth fairy but I know that I had a lot of silver dollars and, when things got rough my first year in college, I took them to the bank in Grinnell and traded them all in for bills so that I could buy groceries. I suppose I could have paid for groceries with silver dollars but I guess I had some pride left...not much obviously, since I was trading in my tooth money to buy Mad Dog and Doritos. Our kids no longer believe in the tooth fairy but they still expect to get a dollar when they lose a tooth. We agreed to continue to pay up because it seemed unfair to punish them just because we were no longer engaged in the Dance of Dental Deception. Post Tooth-Fairy life isn't a bad one really. The kids lose a tooth and they come and ask us for a buck and we don't have to remember to sneak into their bedrooms late at night and root around under their pillows for teeth. Rooting around for teeth is kinda gross if you think about it. Another perk of a life without the tooth fairy? We don't have a big pile of teeth in our bedroom. We always felt compelled to keep them for some reason which is ever more gross than rooting around for them in the first place. Now, we don't really care what happens to the teeth because we're all over the whole thing.
Tonight, at bedtime, Miguel said, "Oh mom...I wanted to tell you that I lost that bottom tooth that was loose." I nodded and he said, "I lost the tooth somewhere in the couch but let me show you the space so you know I'm not lying."
Lost the tooth somewhere in the couch.
LOST THE TOOTH SOMEWHERE IN THE COUCH!
These are words that I never expected to hear ever.
I searched the couch and I found a rubber band, some lint and a dirty sock. I did not, however, find the tooth.
Now you want to visit us, right? Who doesn't want to sit on the couch and have a chance at finding a tooth?
I still owe him a buck but I should probably share that old saying with him, "A tooth in the hand is worth two in the couch."