K's front bottom teeth had been loose for some time. Her dentist was the first to notice a little movement at her checkup in November. As the weeks went by that movement became more and more pronounced. It always used to give me the willies when my first and second graders showed me their loose teeth. I would stifle my shudders when they proudly demonstrated how they could wiggle the new loose tooth with their tongue. I'm not sure why it bugged me--I was never grossed out by my own loose teeth growing up. I even pulled out at least one by myself. K's wiggly teeth made me cringe, and as time went on, it seemed her tongue was always pushed to the front of her mouth, constantly working one or both teeth. Some weeks ago, her two permanent teeth had broken through the surface and were pushing up behind the loose baby ones.
Then yesterday morning I heard her call me early, before her usual waking time. I went into her room and she was lying stffly, eyes wide. "Sometime in the night when it was still dark, my tooth fell out!"
We searched around the sheets and blankets for the missing tooth, me growing worried that she'd somehow swallowed it. How does one do a first visit from the tooth fairy with no tooth? But she was sitting on it--how tiny it was. Looking at it, I remembered when it first popped up when she was a baby. Now she'd outgrown it. I asked her if it bothered her, losing a tooth during the night. She said no, not really, but "the clock in my room was ticking so loudly I couldn't go back to sleep for a long time."
Then that evening as she followed me into T's room, she suddenly stopped. "My tooth was wiggling and it just fell out onto the floor," she exclaimed. Once again, in the same day, we were searching for a newly lost tooth. Thankfully, this one wasn't difficult to find. Here she is with both teeth and her new smile. You can tell by her hair how it is much later in the day.