In our house, the tooth fairy is an enigmatic creature that appears randomly regardless of when a tooth has been lost. In our house, the tooth fairy morphs from a mom to a dad depending on schedules and obligations. The tooth fairy is also very forgetful.
On more than one occasion, the tooth fairy has forgotten to place a dollar underneath Son #1's pillow and retrieve the lost tooth. Usually, the tooth fairy remembers while at work or on the drive over to work. Then, a frantic call is placed to the parent still at home. The tooth fairy's excuses run the gamut of ridiculousness. Once the tooth fairy was stuck in traffic and had sent an email to notify Son #1 of the dilemma. Another time, the tooth fairy was traveling out of state and would surely arrive within a few hours. Once, the tooth fairy sneaked a dollar under Son #1's pillow while the boys were watching cartoons after school. The tooth fairy is a sly and sneaky critter.
One bitterly cold Thursday, Son #1 lost a tooth at the end of the school day. Son #1 was racing from his teacher's classroom as I walked into the school building. I smiled and patted his head. He shouted. "Hi Mom! I lost my tooth! See! I'm going to get my stuff in the gym!"
I smiled and said. "OK." Then, I strolled to the office to take care of some business.
Son #1 sped back from the gym with his backpack and jacket. At the office, the secretary placed his tooth into a tooth locket. Then, she helped him pull it over his head. Son #1 proudly stated. "I can't wait for the tooth fairy to give me a dollar!"
I assured him. "Oh yeah. Just put it under your pillow. The tooth fairy will get you your dollar."
From the school, we drove to a department store. I needed to begin shopping for presents before the impending ice storm descended upon us. Son #1 and I hopped out of the car into the arctic air. We rushed toward the warm building, on a mission to purchase a gift for Abuelita. After searching through the store, we found the perfect gift. Upon paying for the gift, we braced ourselves against the biting wind and headed for the car. As Son #1 jumped into the car, I heard him cry out. "Oh no! I lost my tooth locket. It slipped out of my hands and I can't find it anywhere."
I quickly scanned the ground outside of the car but found nothing. Then, I asked. "Did it fall in the car or outside?"
Son #1 answered. "It fell in the car."
Relieved, I responded. "OK. If it fell in the car, we should be able to find it at home."
At home, Son #1 searched the back seat but could not find the tooth locket anywhere. After he had gone inside, I thoroughly searched my entire car but came up with nothing. I was baffled and then incredibly sad. I had a feeling that the tooth locket had fallen outside of the car at the department store. Maybe, it had fallen underneath the car in a place that was difficult to find. I felt terrible for Son #1.
Son #1 took the loss of his tooth locket fairly well. He is such a positive, happy-go-lucky child. Son #1 smiled sweetly and said. "It's OK, Mommy. We'll find it." Then, he scurried off to play.
As evening fell, the icy rain and sleet began to entomb our little world. I commented to my husband. "Now, we'll never find his tooth. It's probably frozen underneath a layer of ice in the parking lot." My husband agreed with me as we watched the limbs of our trees slowly bend with the weight of the freezing rain. However, Son #1 was unconcerned with his missing tooth and gazed at the icy world before him with wonder in his eyes. "School would definitely be canceled the next day." He thought.
The next morning, Son #1 shrieked with delight as he peered out of his bedroom window. Our world had been transformed into a winter wonderland. Quickly, he devoured his breakfast. Then with the speed of light, he dressed in his snow clothes and ran outside to play. Son #1 slid, dug, and threw ice in every direction. Every now and then, he would come inside to drink hot chocolate and warm his inner core.
The icy backyard looked like fun so I pulled on my own snow clothes. Then, I crunched across the ground to where Son #1 was kneeling. I knelt down beside him and asked. "What are you doing?"
Son #1's voice wavered. "I'm looking for the tooth fairy. She was supposed to come last night but then it snowed. Now she's trapped in the ice and I think she's going to die." He dug frantically through the layers of ice covering our backyard. Poor baby.
I comforted him. "I'm sure that the tooth fairy is fine. I think she text-ed your dad and said that she's just running late because of the weather."
"Are you sure?" Son #1 demanded.
"I'm sure." I replied with a straight face.
Son #1 relaxed. "Phew. I was worried. I thought she got buried under the ice. Will she be here soon?"
"She'll get here as soon as she can." I said and prayed that we might find his lost tooth.
Simple prayers do get answered. We found the tooth a week and a half later underneath the driver's seat in my car. Two days after finding the tooth, the tooth fairy got around to delivering Son #1's dollar.