Did you even know that children could lose teeth at age 4? I thought I’d have until at least 6 until my 4-year-old (OK, almost 5) came running to me, tooth in hand, but apparently not.
I learned this while running errands with the kids. Kaitlyn was in the seat of the cart and Hailey was sitting in the large part of the cart. The lady at the counter had just handed us our sandwich when I looked over to see Hailey holding her mouth, eyes wide, and blood dripping down her hand. WHAT THE HECK JUST HAPPENED?!
As soon as I looked at her, she started crying. Hailey was so freaked out that I had to pull out my fake “mom-is-totally-chill-this is no-big-deal” facade. Through heaves and tears she told me she bumped her mouth on the cart and the tooth had come out in her hand. She was so surprised and confused that she threw it on the floor. Thus began the great tooth search. The ladies behind the counter came out, congratulating Hailey, telling her how exciting this was, and gently sweeping the floor looking for the tooth. 10 minutes later, which felt like an eternity, I saw it, laying on the tile, the tiniest tooth you ever did see. I scooped it up and showed it to Hailey before apologizing to and profusely thanking the kind ladies that had helped us.
I wrapped the tooth in a napkin and pushed the cart toward the checkout while still holding my four year old. Once I had seen that the entire tooth had come out and the one next to it was slightly wiggly, I was no longer super concerned about damage, but the floodgates opened on my emotions. Here I was, holding my sweet firstborn, 2 months shy of being 5 years old. She was wrapped around me and I still felt like she was my baby. Yet, she now had a gap in her smile, a telltale sign of time passing and her growing up. Though I held it together, even smiling and celebrating as I read her the tooth fairy book before her rest time, as soon as I closed the door, my tears came.
When did my baby get so big? They aren’t supposed to loose teeth at 4. She’s only FOUR.
Wanting to make sure her teeth weren’t falling out from decay or damage, I called my dentist for an emergency afternoon appointment.
Hailey was excited to sit in the big chair and she was so proud because everyone at the office told her what a good job she was doing. The dentist took a quick x-ray of her front teeth and sure enough, her two bottom adult teeth are starting to emerge. He warned us that the other bottom tooth would probably come out soon. So yes, all this is normal, despite it feeling too soon for this mama’s heart.
Hailey wanted to write a note to share the story of what happened with the tooth fairy and that night she tucked the note and her tooth into her special pillow.
The pillow has a crocheted tooth fairy on one side and a special pocket for the tooth on the other. I have one just like it from when I was a kid and both pillows were made by one of my Grandma Betty’s dear friends. It is super special!
In the morning she bounded downstairs to tell us that the tooth fairy came! She left a note, answering Hailey’s question about her favorite color (gold), and also left 4 golden coins.
And just like that I marked another “first” down for my firstborn and I recognized the bittersweet, proud ache of watching her grow. It all really does happen so fast.
How old were you when you lost your first tooth?
Do you remember what the tooth fairy brought you?