You are our first child. You are the one that made us fall in love with being parents, the one who convinced us there was still Wonder in the world. You are also the one who taught us how quickly infants can fall off a bed, how literally and figuratively freakishly strong a child can be, and to always bring 2 changes of clothes- for everyone- to church.
You are have been there for every parenting triumph and every parenting failure. All of them.
This story is a recount of the latter, I am sad to say.
Monday night, you were having a rough time getting to bed. There are few things funnier than a VERY tired child yelling at their parents that they are NOT. TIRED. all the while wobbling around like a wet noodle and turning bright red with anger and snot and flailing arms. If you’re not tired, you’re going through menopause, my hand to heaven.
As you were finally crawling under your comforter, we noticed a little red line of blood in your mouth.
“Ry, ” I said, “Is your tooth loose?”
“Can you wiggle it?”
Huh. Well, you didn’t know… so you reached in there, wiggled it around, and pulled it right out.
And then proceeded to lose your mind.
Because WHO KNEW your teeth could come out of your head?
Certainly not you. Your parents never told you. Shoot, we just started regular brushing last month! Loosing teeth was the absolute last thing on our radar. We’ve been busy with growing and walking and potty training. And your brother.
Child, I am so sorry. It was terribly traumatic. You didn’t want to sleep with it under your pillow (because, you’re right, that’s weird), so we wrapped the tooth up and placed it on the kitchen island. The Tooth Fairy came (Wow. So much new information in one night. Again, sorry.) and left you $5… because you are five. And she took the tooth… maybe to give to Abby in a few months! Who knows. We were trying to make it better. Fun. Exciting. An honor. Faily, fail, fail.
We dropped the ball. Never saw it coming. Your Olympic Spotlight story just got that much more interesting.
Let me just say, for the record, that re-living childhood through you is ridiculous. How did we ever survive it ourselves? You turn 5, you get ready to be sent on a big yellow bus to a school far away with people you don’t know, your arms and legs start getting too long for your body, and then, also, oh how ’bout your TEETH COME OUT? And a weird fairy comes? At night while you’re sleeping? And gives you money? And TAKES THE TOOTH?
The hack kinda world is this we’ve got you in? Sunnuva.
And we’re supposed to guide and prepare you? For Pete’s sake. I can’t even wash my car.
The rest of your teeth will be considerably less of an ordeal [fingers and eyes crossed]. But, the fact remains that you are growing up. Sometimes we forget that. We listen to you and we watch you and we think, “She’s so little. She’s so very young for her age.” And then your body goes and blows us into reality. Overnight potty training, losing teeth, posting on horses. Whatever.
Bless you my child.
You are my soul.
My deep, complicated, manic, gut-wrenching soul.
I get you.