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The Tooth Fairy Has Rules, Kid

Several nights ago, Cora came into our room in the middle of the night complaining that part of her mouth hurt. Now, ever since we’d gotten back from New York, middle-of-the-night visits are not uncommon; we spent a week sleeping everyone in one room, and it’s natural for the girls to, shall we say, elaborate on issues to make them visit-worthy.

So when Cora told me in the middle of the night that her mouth hurt, I assumed it was a canker sore –she’ll get them occasionally when her diet goes to crap (thank you, vacation!)- and told her we’d look at it in the morning.

When morning came, Cora brought it up immediately, and imagine my surprise when I looked in her mouth and saw that she was teething! Yes, her six-year molars were coming in, and apparently this one was particularly painful.

I explained the situation to Cora, who immediately became delighted and spent the rest of the day constantly checking on her “new tooth”. She asked for popsicles constantly, which I provided by making her a strawberry/spinach smoothie (don’t judge, it’s delicious) and freezing it into pops. She gnawed away happily, and all seemed well.

Until bedtime.

“I wonder what the tooth fairy’s going to bring me for my new tooth!” Cora said happily as she snuggled into bed.


“Um, baby,” I began tentatively, “the tooth fairy only comes when you lose a tooth, not when you get another baby tooth. You won’t get any money from the tooth fairy for this.”

“But I might!” she insisted.

“I suppose it’s always possible, but I don’t see it happening,” I said more firmly.

Cora humphed and rolled over.

And ever since then, I’ve heard about it. Multiple times a day.

“I just keep really hoping the tooth fairy will come.”

“I’m getting tired of waiting for the tooth fairy to come visit me!”

“Maybe tonight my deepest wish will come true and the tooth fairy will visit.”

Cora’s admitted that she knows we’re the tooth fairies here, and so I’ve told her point-blank that she’s not getting any cash for breaking in another baby tooth. But so far my protestations are falling on deaf ears.

Then yesterday the stakes were upped even more, when Cora’s kitten lost a baby tooth and Maddie happened to catch it.

Now, I’ve had several cats and I’ve never seen one lose a tooth. I assumed they had baby teeth like us, but just to be sure I called the vet who confirmed that yes, it’s normal for a kitten to lose her tooth. So we whooped and saved it in a cup and danced around happily.

Then Cora turned to me with shining eyes and said, “There’s no way the tooth fairy can ignore this! At the very least she has to give me some cash to buy my kitten a present.”

So I had to start again with the whole bad-fairy routine, explaining vehemently that there’d be nothing under her pillow in the morning. After all, if I cave on this, the next thing I know Maddie will be demanding retroactive pay for all her baby teeth. With interest.

As she was going to bed Cora sighed again, saying, “I just really want the tooth fairy to come visit! But I suppose she never will. So go ahead and remove my tooth pillow – which I SEWED MYSELF FOR HER – from my bed and stow it in my dressing table. What use have I for it?”

Yes, she really does talk like that.

Sigh. What’s a tooth fairy to do?


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