I had left the Smalls sitting in the bike-trailer pram outside a shop this afternoon. They were eating nectarines. When I got back Small Z was saying, “Take this nectarine away mama, I hurt my tooth on it, I hurt my tooth…” I was trying to fit yet more stuff into the trailer and had my head down, muttering “Just a minute, give me a minute, hold on a second…”
Finally, as she gave me the nectarine, and I passed it on to Small DB, I looked her in the face. Oh dear god – a GAP!! SHe had no idea she’d lost a tooth – it hadn’t been wobbly. I dug around on the floor of the bike trailer and FOUND THE TOOTH! Tiny little thing that it is…
Small Z was swinging in between tears and wonder. Bizarre. I told her the story of the way I lost my first tooth. I was still four, but had started school. We (the preps) were on the school oval playing ‘stacks on’ with the Grade Sixes – the oldest kids in the school that were supposed to keep an eye on us while we were still newbies.
I was in amongst it all and my chin came hard down on someone’s head. I felt a pebble in my mouth…and spat it out. It wasn’t until later that I realised I’d lost my tooth. I was pretty upset – I remember my dad picking me up from school that day. Together we went and searched the oval – he must have been humouring me because my tooth would have been just as tiny as Small Z’s. We didn’t find it. He took me to the All Soul’s Op Shop in Sandringham (still one of my favourites) and I was allowed to choose whatever I wanted. I was dazzled by such a prospect. I chose this little dish (I still don’t know why it appealed to the four-year-old-me so much…)
“So the Tooth Fairy didn’t come?” gasped Small Z, at the end of my story about the Olden Days.
“Well she couldn’t, could she? There was no tooth. It was lost on the oval.”
“Do you think that when we leave your tooth out for the Tooth Fairy we can leave a note to ask her to leave the money…and leave the tooth for your mama to keep?”
“Nooooooooo – she might not leave me the gold coin!!”
M wrote out her note to the Tooth Fairy, and I soothed many worries about the Tooth Fairy arriving at the wrong time (“What if Daisy wakes up in the night and she comes? No one is supposed to see her!” and “What if I wake up and she’s here?”). Therefore it was decided to leave the tooth on the kitchen bench – none of that difficult under-the-pillow stuff – the logistics were clearly too difficult…
My mum is coming to mind the Smalls in the morning, and I anticipate her SHRIEKING when she notices… MIND THE GAP! And M and I couldn’t help ourselves…a glitter trail leading from the back door to a tiny screw-topped jar holding a $2 coin…