Out of all the mythical creatures out there, the Tooth Fairy is one that completely baffles me. It also blows my mind that kids actually buy it time and time again.
Think about it, we get our kids all psyched up to lose their teeth to get a reward. Okay, I can buy that. But then, we tell them that this person called The Tooth Fairy is going to magically break into their house at night, which is totally fine, know exactly where their room is and exchange a tooth hiding under their pillow for money (usually). Then the tooth fairy magically disappears until the next time a tooth falls out.
What does she do with all of those teeth? Is she part of some strange teeth collecting cult? Is she a frustrated dentist? What about the money she leaves? Where did she get it? Inquiring moms want to know!
Thank goodness many kids just take the Tooth Fairy at face value and don’t want to interrogate her like I do. All of my curiosity got me to do some digging…okay actually some googling.
There are so many different reference points but the consensus seems to be that the concept of the Tooth Fairy originated in early Europe where it was a tradition to bury kids’ teeth when they fell out. From there, it gets a little fuzzy as to how the Tooth Fairy was born.
The earliest mention of the Tooth Fairy as we know her (or him, depending on what you believe) dates back to 1908. That’s when an article in the “Chicago Daily Tribune” mentioned that mothers should buy something at the five cent store to replace a child’s tooth that’s left under the pillow. Some say from there, kids started asking where their teeth went and stories of the mythical creature were created.
Fast forward to 2017 where the Tooth Fairy is still alive and well, at least in my house. My 7-year-old sometimes asks how she gets in. I tell her it’s magic and she still believes.
It always boggles my mind how we can be so hypocritical as parents to get our kids to believe in something. We teach our kids all about stranger danger, yet we tell them that it’s perfectly fine that some lady with wings come into the house every now and again to steal their teeth. But she leaves cash, so it’s cool. Then we tell them it’s okay to ring doorbells of people we don’t know and to accept treats at Halloween. Don’t forget the gran daddy of them all…it’s okay to sit on an old guy’s lap and tell him what you want for Christmas. Just like the Tooth Fairy he’ll break into your house. He won’t take anything though; he just leaves you what you asked for.
Ahh…the joys of parenting! But it comes with the territory.
If you sometimes put your fairy wings on to transform into your Tooth Fairy alter ego, what do you do with all the teeth? While I don’t bury my kids’ teeth like they did back in the day. I do keep them. Is that weird? I have little baggies of teeth. So far there are seven. I feel bad throwing them away for some reason. I honestly don’t know what I’m going to do with them. I’ll probably show them to my kids one day once the mystery is revealed. Maybe we’ll make some strange art deco collage out of teeth, who knows?
For now, I’ll continue to tip toe in the darkest of night, cash in hand, and swipe teeth like a ninja in hopes my daughter doesn’t wake up. I’ll add to my strange teeth collection and pray the kids don’t find it. I don’t know how I would talk myself out of that one! Viva La Tooth Fairy…the woman, the myth, the legend!
*This blog originally appeared on my site The Mommy Rundown