In case any of you are considering embarking on a life of crime, there are some guidelines you should follow.
I’m generally pretty honest and aboveboard, but there is one part of my life where I am NOT honest.
I am deeply embroiled in the lie that there is a tooth fairy.
My 9-year-old still thinks there’s a tooth fairy. Being a family of late-tooth-losers, I may have YEARS of tooth fairy duty ahead of me. (I think I just called my family losers…)
My kid never believed there was a Santa Claus or an Easter Bunny. But the tooth fairy? He bought that hook, line and sinker.
Really? If there are actually fairies in the world, I HOPE they’re obsessed with cooler things than disembodied teeth.
I’m really hoping my son figures it out on his own, but it’s more likely I am going to screw up and break his heart. Because I’m terrible at being the tooth fairy.
Mostly because I do not follow these criminal guidelines:
1. Even criminals need reminders.
When the children go to bed, I clock out from parenting. I’ve even considered installing one of those old-school punchy clocks so I can literally punch out. So when some kid loses their tooth at noon, by 10 pm, a couple hours after I’ve tossed my mommy hat into the corner, there’s no way I remember that I’m in a long con with my sweet child and am supposed to play a role tonight.
Twice now, the next morning when that little face has jumped up and said, “I wonder if the tooth fairy came???” I’ve had to whip up some lame excuse as to why she didn’t. Maybe she had too many kids last night? Maybe she’s going senile? Maybe she found a hobby that’s not disgusting?
Then, trying to cover my tracks, I wait until they are busy playing, sneak into their room and position their loot carefully so it LOOKS like it just fell off the side of the bed.
“Honey, let’s change your sheets. You found WHAT? Huh! It must have slid off the bed during the night…”
Lies, lies and more lies…
2. Keep It Simple, Stupid.
When the first tooth fell out in our house, I was excited. Prima Denta! I get to be the tooth fairy! So the tooth fairy wrote a note to go along with the dollar. (I can’t believe the tooth fairy thinks a bloody tooth-stump is worth a dollar, but whatever.)
I didn’t think through that I was setting the standard of care for the tooth fairy with this act. NOT only do I have to make sure I have a dollar on hand – which is rare, I also have to write a note.
I did realize that the tooth fairy shouldn’t have my handwriting. My answer? Add swirly curly-cues to EVERY SINGLE LETTER. What an idiot. It took 15 minutes to write “What a beautiful tooth!” Which, if you’re keeping track, was another lie.
Now every time I’m scrambling because I-forgot-to-be-the-tooth-fairy-last-night, I have to spend twenty minutes writing a curly-cue note.
3. It doesn’t pay to be nice.
My oldest was distraught at the idea that the tooth fairy was going to take his FIRST TOOTH EVER. Really distraught. Deciding to make her the bad guy I said, “Write her a note and ask if you can keep it.” Which he did.
I thought the tooth fairy would just explain that wasn’t how it worked. It was money for tooth. But I didn’t count on what an emotional wuss she is. She looked at that little crooked-lettered note and the picture of the tooth with a heart around it and she couldn’t bear to take the nasty thing away. So she went and spent another 10 minutes curly-cuing ‘Of course you can keep your tooth!’ and left the tooth
and the dollar.
Fast forward a couple years and now I have TWO kids with a growing collection of bloody tooth-stumps that they’re bodies TRIED to throw away—but we kept.
So take my word for it and put a little advanced planning into any crimes you’re going to commit. It’s worth it in the long run.