Take the Tooth, Leave the Money, and Go Away

Posted on October 15, 2018


There are only two times in a person’s life that they willfully eject body parts. One occurs with advancing age, when random body parts prolapse and peek out from their usual hiding places within the body. The other is during early elementary school years, when baby teeth pop out at random, in order to make way for adult teeth to emerge.

Unlike baby teeth falling out, the prolapse of body parts is not greeted with any type of fanfare or excuse for celebration. Instead, there usually occurs some kind of discomfort or embarrassment that eventually sends one to some kind of physician, who then recommends some kind of surgery, that results in some kind of bill for payment.

The release of baby teeth, on the other hand, is most definitely an event for celebration. There is usually no discomfort, just a bit of wiggling and finger-poking. No doctor is involved. And, instead of it costing money, the person who loses the tooth generally makes money on the deal.

This past weekend, Life in the Boomer Lane was taking care of her three young grandsons, while her daughter and son-in-law were in Chicago. The evening before their parents were due back, her seven-year-old grandson, Simon, lost a tooth. He put it under his pillow, confident that the Tooth Fairy would visit, take his tooth, and leave him some cash.

Unfortunately for Simon, his two-year-old brother decided that night to make an artistic statement over having been put to bed, against his express desire to stay up all night, clearly enunciated as “No night night, Ne Ne.” He threw everything out of the crib. He then removed his sleep sack and pajamas and threw them overboard as well. He dismantled the wall security monitor and added that to the pile. He even managed to add a folding suitcase rack into the mix. Last, in a move reminicient of The Flying Wallendas, he went airborne, flung himself over the rail onto the pile, walked to the bedroom door and sttod there, repeatedly yelling “Open the door, Ne Ne!”

These unnerving events served to distract LBL’s attention away from the tooth, and instead cause her to stay up all night in a state of fear and alarm, the likes of which she hadn’t experienced since the moment Trump unveiled his red MAGA cap, sitting atop his coiffed and lacquered head.

The following morning, as LBL guzzled back coffee directly from the pot,  Simon marched into the kitchen and announced, “I knew there was no Tooth Fairy, Ne Ne. There is no money under my pillow. I knew Mommy and Daddy were the Tooth Fairy and they weren’t here, so there was nothing.”

LBL, only partially recovered from her trauma from the evening before, knew she had to do something very quickly to turn things around. She explained to Simon that the Tooth Fairy waits until Mommies and Daddies return from wherever they go, so that they can see the tooth for themselves. Only then will the Tooth Fairy come take the tooth away and leave money.

Her grandson, relieved that there was an explanation for all this, went about his day in a buoyant manner of great expectation.  When her daughter and son-in-law returned, they made a big fuss over the tooth.  During the discussion of the Tooth Fairy’s arrival, her grandson asked questions like “How does she know where my house is?” “How does she get into the room if my door is shut?” “How long does she stay in my room?”

LBL didn’t help to calm down his increasing concern. When the question, “Exactly how big is she?” came up, LBL told Simon that when his mommy was in elementary school, the Tooth Fairy would always visit the County Fair. Simon squeaked, ” But I thought she was really tiny.” LBL said, “No, she was adult-size.”

Yesterday morning, LBL asked her grandson if the Tooth Fairy visited him. He said he left the tooth under his mom’s pillow and that’s where the Tooth fairy left the money. After he, his dad, and his nine-year-old brother left to participate in a charity walk for breast cancer,  LBL asked her daughter if Simon had slept in her bed that night. Her daughter said no, that he had placed the tooth under her pillow, then simply written a note and taped it to his bedroom door.  The note said,  “Tooth Fairy, please go to Mom’s bed. Love, Simon.”