I found a post from Writer’s Circle on Facebook – with a 30 day writing challenge. This is day 2: My earliest memory
“Tooth Fairy! Are you there? If you can hear me, I swallowed my tooth. Can you bring me some money anyway?”
Yes, this was me. Yelling out the open window hoping against hope that the venerable maiden of milk teeth would hear my plea. After all, it wasn’t entirely my fault that I had swallowed the little tiny bottom front tooth.
The tooth in question was in fact the second tooth I had ever lost. It had been hanging by a gum thread for two days when I was invited to my best friend Stephanie’s house for McDonald’s and to play. Happy Meals were always a great treat but to be allowed to sit on the shag carpet in the ‘good’ living room and eat it at the coffee table was sheer nirvana.
My standard order always included a hamburger. Ironically enough, having inspected my daughter’s Happy Meal hamburger the other day, I’m happy to report that they have changed little since 1977. They still have those tiny square pieces of white onion. Just about the size of a tiny milk tooth.
At some point during our exalted carpet and coffee table meal, I looked at my burger and noticed a tiny spec of red on the bun. Was it ketchup? Was it… blood? It was. My tooth that hadn’t wanted to let go was gone! But where? We checked the shag carpet, we checked the burger, we checked the paper wrapper… Gone. I had swallowed it. And there followed a good hour of my being completely inconsolable.
My dad had never been what you would call full of whimsy and mirth but he did have the bright idea for me to yell out the window. He convinced me that she didn’t want my teeth after the first one, which I had already lost and given to the tooth fairy some weeks earlier, so it wouldn’t be a problem that I couldn’t provide it. I just had to let her know.
So I did. And ‘lo and behold, the next morning, I found $0.50 under my pillow.
To this day, I am in awe that the tooth fairy heard me and when my dear wee one swallowed her own ‘second’ tooth this past week, I had her stand on the porch and yell out her dilemma, once again in hopes that her plea would be heard as mine was. $5 appeared under my daughter’s pillow that night. Despite tooth value having skyrocketed up with years gone by and inflation, the rules hadn’t changed: the winged fairy didn’t need the second tooth and all was well in our world.