The joke’s on me. The other night I am high-fiving my husband, feeling victorious because my ten-year-old daughter lost a tooth and lays in bed, awaiting the arrival of the Tooth Fairy.
“Do you really think she still believes in it?” hubby questions.
“I dunno. But she did put the tooth under her pillow and never told me otherwise.”
So I confidently conclude that I’d bought myself more time---time to keep her innocent, unsuspecting, and untainted by life’s harsh realities. And she was when she walked out the front door on her way to school yesterday morning.
But when I go to pick her up, another child enters the car. And, Poof! Her innocence is gone. Forever.
“Mami, John asked me to be his date for the fifth-grade dance (in May) but, I’d rather wait for Shawn to ask me. What do I tell John? All his friends are telling me to go with him,” she blushes.
My heart sinks. Just two weeks ago she still doesn’t “like” anyone. In fact, in a pre-pubescent hormonal attack, she cries that she still wants to be my “baby” and not treated like what she is---the eldest of five.
I switch gears and get myself into the love-triangle-gossip-mode. Suddenly, I find myself advising her as if she were a girlfriend caught in a love-pickle. She knows very little about this new world she’s been thrust into and wants my opinion.
But what about her siblings? Her eight-year-old sister just wrote a letter to the Tooth Fairy last month, asking for an increase in prize-money, requesting her favorite pencil not be taken. Will her older sister’s amorous interests ruin it for the rest of the believers? How can I keep the “others” insulated from their sister’s impending bouts of passion and “coolness?”
In resignation, I realize that every era must come to an end. There is a time and place for everything. Perhaps, I need to accompany her on this transition and come clean about the Tooth Fairy. Maybe she’ll collaborate and keep the truth from her younger siblings.
I think the bigger, more challenging issues are yet to appear on the horizon and this recent episode was just a sample of what’s yet to come. Oh boy. As her mom, I’ve got to pay attention and guide her gracefully into this tumultuous world of love and heartache and drama. She’s a rookie and frankly, I’ve got a world of experience to share. God forbid she makes some of the mistakes I did.
So my lingering question is: Can the Tooth Fairy survive in the hostile Land of Love, Heartbreak and Melodrama?
I think I already know the answer.
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